Cricket World Cup’s Greatest Moments – The Mother Of All Mix-ups




Cricket World Cup - Greatest Moments

Cricket World Cup – Greatest Moments

No South African fan will be able to erase the memories of Lance Klusener trotting off in disappointment after bringing them to the brink of a World Cup final. After innumerable twists and turns, it all came down to one run and South Africa failed to managed to get that all important run.

The year was 1999, the venue was Edgbaston and it was the grandest stage of them all – a World Cup semifinal. The match had everything – a 5 wicket haul, innumerable collapses, a ball that spun a mile, yorkers being smashed to the boundary and the most famous mix-up of all time. But most importantly the match failed to produce a winner and Australia qualified for the final breaking a million South African hearts.

Chasing 214 for victory, Lance Klusener walked into bat at the fall of Jacques Kallis with the score reading 175/6 in the 45th over. Damien Fleming cleaned up Pollock in the next over and Boucher’s stumps were rattled by McGrath. But Lance Klusener was taking the match into his own hands as he cracked up 2 boundaries. Steve Elworthy’s run out meant that South Africa needed 16 to win with the last wicket remaining. Paul Reiffel couldn’t hold onto a Klusener bullet at long on and parried it over the boundary and South Africa needed 9 to win of the last over.

Damien Fleming was to bowl the last over and the first two balls were full length yorkers outside the off stump. But Klusener effortlessly despatched them to the boundary. The scores were now level and Steve Waugh was left with no option but to bring the field up. The next ball was short and Klusener pulled it to mid on. Donald, at the non striker’s end backed up too far and Darren Lehmann almost hit the stumps. South Africa survive!

The next ball was a perfect yorker. Klusener mishit it and set off for a single but Donald was caught ball watching. What happened next was absolute drama, comedy and tragedy! The ball went to Mark Waugh at mid off, who flicked it back to Fleming. Donald, who had dropped his bat in the confusion, started running. Fleming, fearing that he would overshoot, rolled the ball down the pitch. Gilchrist patiently waited for what seemed like an eternity and finally knocked the bails off. The match was tied! But Australia were celebrating. They had made it to the finals on the basis of a better net run rate. South Africa had blown it yet again on the world’s biggest stage!

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Monish Menon

Author:

Hi, I am Monish Menon from Hyderabad and currently working at Franklin Templeton Investments as a Compliance Business Analyst. Sport has always been my passion since I was a kid and I invest all my non-existent free time by watching, playing, writing and analyzing various sporting events across the world. Apart from being a diehard Manchester United fan and a Ferrari supporter, I believe that Roger Federer is still the best tennis player and Sachin Tendulkar is God. I play club cricket and I also am a part of my organization’s cricket and football squad. Being such a sports fanatic, writing about it is something that came naturally to me and I am glad that I got an opportunity through thesportsmirror.com to share my thoughts with the rest of the world. For other articles written by me, you can visit my blog at www.monishmenon.wordpress.com

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