Inzy's first hurrah
A storming World Cup semi-final in gusty Auckland ended with Pakistan knocking out the co-hosts, New Zealand. New Zealand had managed 262 for 7, thanks mainly to Martin Crowe, who flashed 91 off 83 balls before he was run out. Pakistan went slowly in reply, until Inzamam-ul-Haq flayed 60 off 37 balls, with a number of meaty strokes into the wide open spaces. One straight hit got caught in the wind for an age before carrying for six. He added 87 in ten overs with Javed Miandad before he was run out by Chris Harris, but with nine needed off eight balls, Moin Khan swiped Harris for a big six - anguished cries could be heard all around the ground - and then mowed him behind square for the winning four.
The second double-hundred of the 2015 World Cup, and the sixth overall, was scored by Martin Guptill - the first New Zealander to reach the increasingly gettable milestone. His 237, the highest score in World Cups, came in the quarter-final match in Wellington against West Indies, whose star batsman Chris Gayle had scored 215, against Zimbabwe, a month earlier. Guptill was dropped in the first over and went on to score 60% of New Zealand's 393 for 6. He got his first hundred in 111 balls and his second in 41. Guptill broke his own record for the previous highest one-day score by a New Zealander, 189 not out against England in 2013.
A little master is born. Alvin Kallicharran's lack of height - 5ft 4ins - was no impediment to his gorgeous stroke-making, and in all he made 12 centuries in his 66 Tests. That haul included two in his first two innings, against New Zealand in 1971-72, and he also made eight scores in the 90s, a pre-Steve Waugh record. After 50 Tests, Kallicharran averaged 50.19 and looked set to go down as a great, but his form fell away and his Test career ended when he went on the West Indian rebel tour of South Africa in 1981-82. He played for Warwickshire for many years with huge success, and qualified to play for them as an Englishman in 1988 after settling in Birmingham. He coached Kenya in the 1999 World Cup.
A performance of breathtaking heroism from Allan Border earned Australia a draw against West Indies in Trinidad. Having made 98 not out in the first innings, he added an unbeaten 100 in the second, and survived the last 105 minutes of the match with last man Terry Alderman. In all, Border faced 583 balls and batted 639 minutes in one of the great rearguard actions.
Ten years after a match-saving performance from a tough-as-nails Aussie came a match-winning one. Steve Waugh was the man, and South Africa his victims for the first (but by no means last) time. In the second Test in Cape Town Waugh did his damage with the ball, grabbing a Test-best 5 for 28 in the second innings as South Africa collapsed and Australia squared the series with a nine-wicket win.
Australia's heaviest post-war defeat. In Calcutta, they were slaughtered by India, who in the process took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. Australia were 1 for 2 after the first over, after which things only got worse. The margin was an innings and 219 runs, and India used up only five wickets in reaching their 633, which included 85 fours and six sixes. All of a formidable top six (VVS Laxman, Navjot Sidhu, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Mohammad Azharuddin, Sourav Ganguly) reached 50, but the masterclass came from the captain, Azhar, who charmed his way to an unbeaten 163. Australia's attack wasn't the best - remember Paul Wilson and Gavin Robertson? - but they did have Shane Warne. With 0 for 147, this is not a match he'll care to remember.
In his second Test Sunil Gavaskar made the first of his 34 Test hundreds, against West Indies in Guyana. For good measure he added another in the next Test, and two more in the one after that. Nobody has got close to his record 774 runs (at an average of 154) for a first series. His 34 hundreds, too, remained a record for 19 years till his compatriot Sachin Tendulkar surpassed it in December 2005.
Two innings sum up the unfulfilled potential of Matthew Maynard, who was born today. On his first-class debut, aged 19, he slammed a century off 98 balls against Yorkshire, racing from 84 to 102 with three consecutive straight sixes off Phil Carrick. Eight years later he laced the Australians (Merv Hughes, Paul Reiffel, Warne and, er, Wayne Holdsworth) for a hundred off 73 balls. But Maynard had a bit of a reputation as a choker, and his highest score in four Tests was a mere 35, in his last match, in Jamaica in 1993-94.
Alec Bannerman, a stone-walling batsman who was born on this day, was part of the first Australian team in England in 1878, and also toured in 1880, 1882, 1884, 1888 and 1893. In the 1882 "Spofforth" Test at The Oval, which Australia won by seven runs, he took the catch that dismissed WG Grace. He scored a seven-and-a-half-hour 91 in Sydney to secure the Ashes in 1892-93. After retirement he worked as coach for the New South Wales Cricket Association.
Left-arm spinner Jack Saunders, born today, took nine wickets on debut against England in Sydney in 1902. Later that year he went to England and South Africa as part of Joe Darling's team. He took 18 wickets in wet conditions in the four Tests in England and 14 in two in South Africa, including 9 for 66 in Johannesburg. He played only two Tests of the 1903-04 Ashes but featured in all five in the 1907-08 series, where he took 31 wickets, including 9 for 104 in Melbourne.
Born on this day in Johannesburg, Grant Elliott, a compact batsman and a swing bowler with a measured run-up, was named in New Zealand's 13-man squad for the Hamilton Test against England in Hamilton. His best innings was a 115 against Australia in Sydney that nearly took New Zealand home. Following Jacob Oram's retirement from Tests, Elliott had a chance to cement his place but did not take it, although he earned a surprise recall to the one-day side in early 2013, playing in New Zealand's historic ODI series win in South Africa. It was another surprise when he was named in the 2015 World Cup squad. Playing Sri Lanka just prior to the global tournament, Elliott celebrated his second recall with a world record sixth-wicket stand of 267 with Luke Ronchi in Dunedin. But the innings he will be remembered for is the one against South Africa in the World Cup semi-final: Elliot made an unbeaten 84 off 73 balls, hitting a six off the penultimate ball to complete a thrilling win.
It took Netherlands only 13.5 overs to chase 190 in Sylhet and knock Ireland, their opponents in the match, and Zimbabwe out of the World T20. In an astonishing display of power-hitting, Netherlands scored a world-record 91 in the Powerplay overs. Opener Stephan Myburgh's 17-ball half-century was the second fastest in T20s. Netherlands progressed to the Super 10 stage, where, three days after their electric performance against Ireland, they were bowled out for 39 - the lowest total in T20Is - by Sri Lanka.
India continued their dominance over Pakistan in world events with a thumping seven-wicket win in the World T20 opener in Mirpur. Pakistan imploded to 130 for 7; legspinner Amit Mishra led India's strangling operation, before Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina motored them to victory.