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People like the World Twenty20. It's short, no one cares much, there will be another one soon, and Afghanistan plays in it. It's also the only tournament Australia have not won, which helps.
It's been two years since the last ICC World T20, and in short attention spans of T20 fans, that's like forever. So to recap…
Season 1 - The Pilot: Or how India learned to stop the moaning and love the T20
Some people laughed at the fact the word "cup" had been left off the title. Teams headed to South Africa, Australia turned up late and disinterested, India sent a second XI and England put all their hopes on things called Snape and Schofield.
Chris Gayle opened the tournament with many sixes, and in much the same style he plays in all forms of cricket. Umar Gul and Stuart Clark (yes, the tournament was that long ago) took heaps of wickets. Paul Collingwood got in trouble for playing the lap, off the field.
No one knew enough about Stuart Broad to hate him or not, but they all still laughed at him when Yuvraj Singh tossed him out the ground six times in an over.
India and Pakistan met in the final, where right in front of our eyes Misbah-Ul-Haq invented the IPL with one foul scoop. Shoaib Malik thanked every single Muslim in the world, even the Indian ones. MS Dhoni said nothing that interesting, he just produced on the field. India, superpower.
Season 2 - The Lord Afridi
The World T20, still not a cup, made its way to England.
Zimbabwe pulled out of the tournament after Robert Mugabe refused to admit that T20 was also a gentlemen's game.
England delighted pretty much everyone by losing the opening game to a Dutch team inspired by the might of Dirk Nannes' beard and Stuart Broad's "fielding".
Australia were the next to bring everyone joy by kicking out Andrew Symonds and then getting kicked out themselves. Ireland made the second round, Bangladesh did not. Graeme Napier got a tracksuit.
Angelo Mathews defeated West Indies in one over. Umar Gul hit the stumps more than the guy with the rubber mallets who puts them in the ground. No one had any idea what Ajantha Mendis was doing.
Tillakaratne Dilshan's dilscoop played Shahid Afridi in the final, and Shahid Afridi won.
Shahid Afridi posed, posed, moved his head like an excitable puppy, and then posed some more. This was Shahid Afridi's time. People around the world raced to eBay to buy bootleg Pakistani shorts to replace their '92 World Cup ones.
Season 3 - England win something
Shahid Afridi's time didn't last long; the next tournament was within months, not years, of the previous one. The ICC milked violently at the World T20's teat as no one at all gave a damn about the Champions Trophy that had been cancelled.
The West Indies were the venue, this time with a soundtrack. The feel-good hit of the summer was Afghanistan playing in the tournament. Hamid Hassan was one of the quickest bowlers in the tournament and boy did he wear that headband.
For the first time Australia took the T20s seriously. They sent Dirk Nannes, who led all-comers in wickets and cool manly beards. Dirk was the face of T20 cricket, unkempt, masculine and sexually alluring in one-over spells.
The Mendis bubble burst when even the Australian batsman could work him out. India players were trapped in a nightmare of never-ending T20 tournaments, somehow managing to fit four of them into about 12 months. Stuart Broad's tournament was mostly okay. Mike Hussey broke the hearts of all Pakistanis and snapped the spine of Saeed Ajmal with an innings of pure thievery.
The ghosts of cricket's past met in the final, England v Australia. KP played a fine team innings to completely demolish a limp Australian team who kept waiting for Mike Hussey to save them. 2010 was the year of the Yardy.
After many years of inventing tournaments and staging them every second week, the ICC had done what its original purpose was: to create a tournament that England could win. Although, because of naming issues, England have still never won a World Cup.
Women's World T20
New Zealand were the runners-up.
Season 2 New Zealand were the runners-up.
Keywords: World Twenty20
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