World Cup 2011 March 26, 2011

The domino effect

From Venkataraghavan Srinivasan, India

From Venkataraghavan Srinivasan, India

The group stage has drawn to a close and the quarter-finals are underway. There have been phenomenal innings filled with lusty hitting, but there have also been instances when wickets have fallen like a stack of cards, or dominos. South Africa self-destructed on Friday against New Zealand to be knocked out of the World Cup. Here, we look at ten batting collapses, some similar, some even more dramatic, from the group stage.

No. 10
13/5 in 32 balls
West Indies v South Africa
209/5 in 42.1 overs to 222/10 in 47.3 overs (batting first)
Result: Lost

This was the first real ‘big name’ match of the World Cup. For 42 overs, it was shaping up into a cracker. With Shivnarine Chanderpaul at the crease and Kieron Pollard and Darren Sammy still to come, 300 looked possible. However, Imran Tahir, on his debut, and Dale Steyn dismantled the lower order with tight, precise bowling. South Africa cantered home with a century from AB de Villiers.

No. 9
27/5 in 51 balls
Ireland v Bangladesh
151/5 in 36.3 overs to 178/10 in 45 overs (chasing 206)
Result: Lost

Bangladesh had lost to Ireland in the 2007 World Cup. They needed to win this one at home for pride and to keep their quarter-final hopes alive. Instead, they struggled against a disciplined Irish bowling attack and an unflappable batting line-up. Shafiul Islam, who had World Cup figures of 9-0-80-1, came back for a fiery second spell of 6-1-10-4. The Irish lower order was mopped up and Bangladesh were on their way.

No. 8
7/5 in 30 balls
Bangladesh v West Indies
51/5 in 13.5 overs to 58/10 in 18.5 overs (batting first)
Result: Lost

Bangladesh were ranked higher than West Indies coming into the World Cup, and it seemed to rankle the latter. Electing to bat, Bangladesh were already in a heap of trouble at 51 for 5 in the fourteenth over, and were looking to rebuild. West Indies, however, went for the kill. Kemar Roach, Sammy and Sulieman Benn, who had shared the first five wickets, shared the last five as well, and West Indies had proven a point.

No. 7
11/5 in 40 balls
West Indies v India
154/2 in 30.2 overs to 165/7 in 37 overs (chasing 269)
Result: Lost

Zaheer Khan started the slide by castling the well-set Devon Smith. The next over, Harbhajan Singh had the dangerous Pollard caught at long-on. The keeper Devon Thomas was stumped and the captain Sammy was run out. Yuvraj Singh then had Russell caught at point off an uppish cut. West Indies had collapsed against India, South Africa and England.

No. 6
3/4 in 21 balls
West Indies v England
222/6 in 41.1 overs to 225/10 in 44.4 overs (chasing 244)
Result: Lost

England and Bangladesh’s place in the quarter-finals hung on the result of this match. Ramnaresh Sarwan and Andre Russell had taken West Indies to within 22 runs of victory. And then, Man of the Match James Tredwell trapped Russell in front and Graeme Swann took Sarwan and Roach. A Benn run-out later, England had lived to see another day.

No. 5
11/5 in 11 balls
India v England
327/5 in 48 overs to 338/10 in 49.5 overs (batting first)
Result: Tied

Tim Bresnan bowled a terrific 49th over. He started with a slower ball that Yusuf Pathan skied to mid-off. Next ball, he yorked and bowled Virat Kohli, who had given himself too much room. Two balls later, he yorked Harbhajan and had him adjudged leg before. The next over, two run-outs followed five no-balls and India had lost half their team in less than two overs.

No. 4
8/4 in 17 balls< br> England v India
281/2 in 42.3 overs to 289/6 in 45.2 overs (chasing 339)
Result: Tied

If Bresnan did it for England, Zaheer did it for India. England were coasting to victory when they took the batting Powerplay in the 43rd over. In the fourth ball, Ian Bell skied Zaheer to mid-off. Next ball, Zaheer bowled an inswinging yorker to Andrew Strauss, batting on 158, and had him leg-before. Two overs later, he knocked back Paul Collingwood’s off-stump. The following over, Harbhajan had Matt Prior holing out to midwicket.

No. 3
3/4 in 31 balls
South Africa v England
124/3 in 31.5 overs to 127/7 in 37 overs (chasing 172)
Result: Lost

A lucky wicket started this one. AB de Villiers left a James Anderson delivery outside off alone, but the keeper noticed belatedly that the bails had fallen. Replays showed that the ball had nicked off-stump. Two balls later, the other set batsman, Faf du Plessis was run out. The following over, Anderson returned to bowl JP Duminy and South Africa had lost three wickets on the same score. Three overs and runs later, Michael Yardy had Robin Peterson caught behind.

No. 2
14/5 in 53 balls
Bangladesh v England
155/3 in 30.5 overs to 169/8 in 39.4 overs (chasing 226)
Result: Won

The only team on this list to collapse and still win. Bangladesh were cruising to victory until Imrul Kayes ran an impossible second and was found short. Five overs and seven runs later, Shakib Al Hasan played Swann onto his stumps. Two balls later, Ajmal Shahzad had Mushfiqur Rahim caught behind. In his next over, he bowled Naeem Islam. The following over, Bresnan took a diving catch off a high ball at long onto dismiss Abdur Razzak.

No. 1
29/9 in 55 balls
India v South Africa
267/1 in 39.3 overs to 296/10 in 48.4 overs (batting first)
Result: Lost

The single largest collapse in the World Cup belongs to the most vaunted batting line-up. After dominating 80% of their innings, India let it go in the last 20%, and it all began with the batting Powerplay. Sachin Tendulkar, after a terrific century, sliced Morne Morkel to point. The next over, Steyn had Gautam Gambhir and Yusuf Pathan playing mistimed lofted shots to men in the circle. Yuvraj lifted the last ball of the Powerplay to long-on. Then, Kohli pushed the ball back to Peterson. Steyn crashed Harbhajan’s stumps. Peterson had Zaheer caught at long-on. Steyn returned to get rid of Nos. 10 and 11 off consecutive deliveries.