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All Time Great World Cup: An ODI Championship

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  • All Time Great World Cup: An ODI Championship

    Welcome to the All Time Great ODI Championship!

    Similar to last year's ATG Test Championship, I'll be hosting an ATG World Cup-style tournament to find the greatest ODI nation of all time (according to this tournament). This thread will review each match, including highlights, stats and updated tables.

    The Format
    There will be a group stage consisting of two groups of four teams. The groups were determined by their win percentage throughout their ODI history (source). Each team will play a total of six games in the group stage, playing each opponent once at home and once away. I'll be controlling the home team so neither team should end up with a player-controlled advantage. Like the recent ODI World Cups, a win will reward a team with two points, and an N/R will earn one point. If points are equal at the end of the group stage, places in the finals stage will be determined by the net run rate.

    The top two teams will play in a finals series. Each final will again consist of one home and one away match to maintain fairness. To break a tie, the runs per wicket ratio of the two matches will determine the winner. Super Overs will be used for any ties.

    The Squads.
    I've come up with a list of what I believe are the strongest squads from each of the eight participating nations in this thread. If you would like to suggest changes to the squads, please comment in the thread. Once again to avoid as much player bias as possible the selected XI from each squad will be determined by the default XI of the game itself. From what I understand the game selects its default XI from hidden stats and attributes so this should mean the best possible XI is selected.

    The Groups

    Group A
    Played Wins NRR Total
    RSA 0
    IND 0
    ENG 0
    NZ 0
    Group B
    Played Wins NRR Total
    AUS 0
    PAK 0
    WI 0
    SL 0

  • #2
    Round 1
    Round 1
    RSA vs IND
    ENG vs NZ
    AUS vs PAK
    WI vs Sl

    Game 1: South Africa vs India
    South Africa XI: H Amla, G Smith (c), J Kallis, A de Villiers, F du Plessis, J Rhodes, Q de Kock (wk), S Pollock, I Tahir, D Steyn, A Donald
    India XI: S Tendulkar, R Sharma, V Kohli, R Dravid, V Sehwag, R Jadeja, K Dev, H Singh, A Kumble, J Srinath
    South Africa won the toss and elected to bowl first.
    The chosen XI was picked the default XI chosen by the game. Form will impact future rounds.

    South Africa
    The second ball of the tournament was driven through the covers for 4 by G Smith however the aggressive start by Smith was undone by Srinath when the fast bowler changed the angle to around the wicket and swung one past the bat for the first wicket of the match. After losing an early wicket, South Africa took a conservative approach to the rest of the opening power play and after 10 overs, they were 1-38.

    The first 6 of the ATG World Cup came from a Kallis slog sweep off the bowling of Kumble. By the time the 20th over had come around, Amla and Kallis were looking comfortable against the spin-heavy Indian attack and had brought up their 50 partnership and were starting to increase their run rate. The steady partnership was finally broken by Dev, dismissing Kallis LBW for 70 runs. De Villiers opened his account with a boundary with his first ball and was dropped the very next ball by Sharma in the slips. His innings was explosive but shortlived as he was dismissed in the 35th over by Jadeja, leaving South Africa 3-166 with 15 overs to spare.

    Amla raised his bat for 50 but didn't pick a Kumble wrong'un a few overs later and was trapped LBW for 62. Faf and de Kock tried to get the run rate restarted but fell short before having a real impact while Rhodes found the rope a few times. Pollock and Rhodes ended the innings in style with a quickfire 67-run partnership in the final seven overs of the match.

    Much like the first 10 overs of the South African innings, India looked to play a conservative game, only scoring 30 runs in the opening power play. Steyn found the edge of Sharma in the 16th over, dismissing him for a sluggish 17 off 55 balls. Tendulkar was keeping the scoreboard ticking along nicely, bringing up his 50 with a creative slash over point for 4. Kohli and the Little Master matched the required run rate, putting pressure on the South African bowling attack to take a wicket. The duo surpassed their 50-run partnership comfortably and put India firmly in the box seat.

    An errant stroke from Tendulkar off the bowling of Tahir finally ended the partnership and Tendulkar's 77-run innings. Tahir had two wickets in two overs after a miscued sweep dismissed Dhoni in the single digits. A sweep shot brought up the 50 for Kohli and some glorious strokes from Dravid edged India closer to victory. Dravid found the boundary eight times, including two maximums, before his short and entertaining innings was finished by some quick de Kock glovework off Tahir. His 44 off 27 set the stage for what should be a comfortable final 10 overs for the Indians who needed just 50 more runs and had 6 wickets in hand.

    Sehwag lead the procession with a streak of four consecutive fours but fell in the final straight for 32. Steyn finally found the inside edge of Kohli but it flew to the boundary sealing the victory for India with three overs to spare.

    RSA 6-273
    J Kallis 72(95), H Amla 62(90)
    J Srinath 2-37, A Kumble 2-61

    India 5-275
    V Kohli 86*(82), S Tendulkar 77(83)
    I Tahir 3-63, 2-63

    South Africa lost to India by 5 wickets
    V Kohli was awarded Man of the Match


    • #3
      Game 2: England vs New Zealand
      England XI: K Pietersen, M Trescothick, J Root, J Trott, J Bairstow, A Flintoff (c), J Buttler (wk), I Botham, G Swann, D Gough, J Anderson
      New Zealand XI: S Fleming, B McCullum (wk), K Williamson (c), R Taylor, M Crowe, M Guptil, C Cairns, R Hadlee, D Vettori, K Mills, S Bond
      New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat first.

      New Zealand
      Fleming surprisingly faced up to the first delivery and looked every part of an aggressive opener, hitting two boundaries in the first over. Both he and McCullum got New Zealand off to a flying start scoring 20 runs off the first three overs but England tightened their bowling and by the end of the 10-over power play, had restricted New Zealand to 0-37.

      It was Gough who found the breakthrough when McCullum scooped one to mid-on but Fleming continued to score freely to bring up his run-a-ball 50 with a slog over mid-wicket for 6. The Fleming-Williamson partnership flew past 100 and Williamson himself raised the bat for his own 50. The Kiwi pair rode their luck a bit with some streaky boundaries and some monster hits before Swann got one passed Williamson, dismissing him for 65 runs. The runs didn't stop flowing with the fallen wicket with Taylor scoring multiple boundaries per over and but unfortunately, Fleming fell agonisingly short of a ton, being dismissed by Swann for 97. With seven wickets left in the sheds, New Zealand was well on track for a big 300+ total.

      Flintoff came in to bowl at the death and took two quick wickets before Crowe and Guptil could get settled. At the other end, Anderson was proving difficult to score runs off, bowling a wicket maiden. The run rate continued to increase, however, and Taylor sent yet another 6 over the rope to bring up a lightning-fast 50 off just 25 deliveries. Tayor fell in the last few overs in amongst some impressive hitting between himself and Hadlee. The final five overs had 45 runs scored off them as New Zealand finished their innings with 8-332.

      The first ball of the innings flew off Pietersen's edge to the boundary but the second cannoned into his stumps. This set the tone for the power play with a mix of fine shots, streaky boundaries and both openers being dismissed. After the first 10 overs, England was feeling the pressure as the required run rate was already above 7 runs per over.

      A 50-run partnership between Root and Trott steadied things a bit for England and even when Trott was dismissed by Mills for 29, Bairstow came in and didn't miss a beat to give England a solid chance at chasing the large total. The wind was taken out of England's sails when both Bairstow and Flintoff were removed in consecutive overs. Both Butler and Root decided to continue the aggressive approach to batting to keep the run rate manageable, even managing to get the run rate below 7 for the first time since the opening few overs of the innings.

      Just when it looked like England was beginning to cruise, Root was dismissed by Bond for 97, the same score as Fleming in New Zealand's innings. With a few more quick wickets, New Zealand was able to dismiss England for 280.

      NZ 8-332
      S Fleming 98, R Taylor 69
      A Flintoff 3-84, J Anderson 2-67

      ENG 280
      J Root 97, J Buttler 49
      S Bond 3-52, D Vettori 2-52

      England lost to New Zealand by 52
      S Fleming was awarded Man of the Match


      • #4
        Game 3: Australia vs Pakistan
        Australia XI: M Hayden, A Gilchrist (wk), R Ponting (c), M Hussey, D Jones, M Bevan, A Symonds, M Starc, B Lee, S Warner, G McGrath
        Pakistan XI: S Anwar, S Afridi, B Azam, Z Abbas, I Khan (c), S Malik, M Khan (wk), W Akram, S Mushtaq, W Younis, S Ajmal
        Austalia won the toss ad elected to bat first.

        Gilchrist showed his class by taking on one of the greatest ODI bowlers of all time, Younis, for 6 in the first over. Hayden wasn't able to find the same success however, unable to clear the outfield and was dismissed for 9. Imran Khan soon found Gilchrist's edge after being hit all around the ground. Akram dismissed Hussey in his first over, giving Pakistan a great start to the match. At the 10-over mark, Pakistan had Australia on the ropes at 3-54.

        Ponting and Jones steadied Australia's innings with a fast-paced partnership where both batsmen reached 50, scoring quicker than a run a ball. Jones fell to a straight ball from Mushtaq. Ponting and Bevan enjoyed a similarly paced partnership, which ended when Ponting hoiked an errant shot to deep cover off Khan. His 76 had put Australia on a path to a 300+ score if the rest of the lineup could see out 50 overs. Symonds and Bevan were the last of Australia's recognised batsmen and with 20 overs left in the innings, they needed to put on a significant performance to see Australia to a defendable total.

        Bevan brought up his 50 from an edge to the third man that was just wide of the 'keeper off 41 balls but unfortunately was out caught and bowled in the following over. This left Symonds and the tail for the rest of the innings to survive and put on as many runs as possible. Symonds didn't last more than an over but a successful 50-run cameo partnership from Starc and Lee gave Australia a solid total of 287, though it should have been much greater after the foundation Jones and Ponting had set.

        McGrath started the innings with a metronomic maiden over. It took over 5 overs for the Pakistan overs to find a boundary but once the runs started flowing, they seemed hard to stop. At the end of the fielding restrictions, Pakistan was 0-32, needing more than a run a ball to stay afloat already. It seemed like nothing Australia threw at Pakistan would phase them and soon enough, Pakistan were cruising along, bringing up 100 runs without any loss of wicket.

        Like clockwork, however, Warne was able to produce a breakthrough, removing Anwar for 87. Afridi was also starting to slow down as Australia brought McGrath back into the attack. Once McGrath had bowled out his overs, the runs started flowing again. With Warne causing problems at one end, the other quicks couldn't contain either Azam or Afridi. This led to Bevan coming into the attack to try to shake things up and shake things up he did. He was able to remove Afridi for 73 and would've had Azam in the same over if Jones held on to a catch. Warne also had Imran Khan removed but Pakistan still had wickets in the sheds and needed only 64 runs for victory in the last 10 overs.

        The game suddenly flipped when Brett Lee took a hattrick, including the wickets of Malik, M Khan and Mushtaq. Abbas would have to score the majority of the remaining runs for Pakistan to win now. While Abbas was looking like taking Pakistan to victory in a nailbiting finish, Younis and Ajmal only lasted three balls between them, leaving Abbas stranded with 33 runs and 5 overs to spare and Lee picked up the first 5fa of the tournament.

        AUS 287
        R Ponting 76, M Bevan 51
        W Younis 3-44, S Mushtaq 3-61

        S Anwar 87, S Afridi 73
        B Lee 5-26, S Warne 3-57

        Australia defeated Pakistan by 33 runs
        B Lee was awarded Man of the Match
        Last edited by Wilted; 04-07-2023, 07:44 AM.


        • #5
          Game 4: West Indies vs Sri Lanka
          West Indies XI: C Gayle, G Greenidge, V Richards, B Lara, C Lloyd (c), D Ramdin (wk), D Bravo, M Marshall, J Garner, M Holding, C Ambrose
          Sri Lanka XI: S Jayasuriya, T Dilshan, K Sangakkara, A de Silva, M Jayawardene, U Tharanga, F Mahroof, C Vaas, A Mendis, M Muralitharan, L Malinga

          West Indies won the toss and elected to bowl first.

          Sri Lanka
          With a stacked fast bowling battery, the West Indies looked to capitalise on their own strengths and bowl first. Garner and Holding had the Sri Lankan batsmen unsettled and unable to score freely. Only three boundaries were hit with the initial fielding restrictions and they all came from the streaky edges that were found. Three of those streaky edges led to wickets, with only Jayasuriya withstanding the quick onslaught.

          Jayasuriya found the middle of the bat as many times as he played false shots but ultimately he fell for a hard-earned 30 off 54 balls. So far, he is the only batsman to actually have looked solid against the quick quartet of Marshall, Garner, Holding and Ambrose. Even Bravo was proving too much, taking 2-13 in his first spell. An unlikely 50-run partnership between Tharanga and Vaas was finally broken by Holding.

          Vaas's unbeaten 44 was the only highlight of the Sri Lankan innings as the West Indian quicks rolled them for 160.

          West Indies
          A swashbuckling Gayle led the charge, looking to finish the match quickly. His quickfire 36 ended in fireworks. His opening partner, Greenidge suffered a similar fate without finding the boundary once. Despite a positive start from the Sri Lankan bowlers, they were looking at a sure defeat.

          Viv Richards also blasted some magnificent shots before he too departed prematurely. Lara and Lloyd had little issue in the final 50 runs of the chase, only Lara fell just 8 runs away from victory.

          SL 160
          C Vaas 44*, Tharanga 38
          D Bravo 3-22, M Holding 3-43

          WI 4-163
          B Lara 45, V Richards 40
          L Malinga 3-75, A Mendis 1-15

          West Indies defeated Sri Lanka by 6 wickets.
          D Bravo was awarded Man of the Match


          • #6
            Round 1 Results
            Round 1
            RSA lost to IND
            ENG lost to NZ
            AUS defeated PAK
            WI defeated SL

            Current Standings
            Group A Played Wins N/R NRR Total
            New Zealand 1 1 1.04 2
            India 1 1 0.39 2
            South Africa 1 -0.39 0
            England 1 -1.04 0
            Group B Played Wins N/R NRR Total
            West Indies 1 1 2.91 2
            Australia 1 1 0.66 2
            Pakistan 1 -0.66 0
            Sri Lanka 1 -2.91 0

            Tournament Stat Leaders
            Batsman Runs Bowler Wickets
            S Fleming 98 B Lee 5
            J Root 97 W Younis 3
            S Anwar 87 S Bond 3
            V Kohli 86 S Warne 3
            S Tendulkar 77 S Mushtaq +1 other 3
            Round 2 Fixture
            Round 2
            RSA vs ENG
            IND vs NZ
            AUS vs WI
            PAK vs SL


            • #7
              Game 5: South Africa vs England
              South Africa XI: H Amla, G Smith (c), J Kallis, A de Villiers, F du Plessis, J Rhodes, Q de Kock (wk), S Pollock, I Tahir, D Steyn, A Donald
              England XI: K Pietersen, G Gooch, J Root, J Trott, E Morgan, B Stokes, J Buttler, A Flintoff (c), I Botham, D Gough, J Anderson
              England won the toss and elected to bat first.

              With a couple of changes to their team, England hopes to make the best of batting-friendly conditions in their second match. Newcomer addition to the XI, Gooch, showed why he was selected over Trott when he took on South Africa's opening bowlers, making some quick runs. Pietersen was happy to rotate strike at the other end as the runs built up. England reached the end of the fielding restriction without the loss of a wicket and a 50-run partnership.

              Both Gooch and Pietersen brought up their 50s in consecutive balls, making light work of the South African bowlers. It wasn't until the English openers had put on 162 runs until Tahir found Gooch's edge, dismissing him for 62. Pietersen had turned up the heat after a slow start and was nearing a 100 and continuing to increase his own strike rate. A drive through the on-side brought up his century, the first of the entire tournament, off 94 balls. Though some sloppy fielding didn't help South Africa's efforts, Root and Pietersen were hitting boundaries to all corners of the ground. Root brought up his 50 in just 36 balls and was eyeing a massive total for his team.

              The final 10 overs had some enormous milestones passed. Pietersen made it to 150, and then England's total reached 300. Not long after, Root made his century off 66 balls and England reached 350. Kallis finally got a wicket but it was off a free hit, which meant the partnership was able to grow to 200+. England's final score was 377, helped along by Pietersen's 178 and Root's 121.

              South Africa
              Though Anderson was able to dismiss Smith in the first over, South Africa had a positive start to their innings. Amla looked comfortable against Anderson and Gough, scoring quickly and Kallis was faring better with the bat than he did with the ball. Both batsmen reached 50 and South Africa was ahead at the 15-over mark of the game despite needing 8 runs an over for victory.

              The inclusion of Stokes in the English XI proved successful when he trapped Amla LBW for 74 in his first over. It was Stokes again dismissing de Villiers before he was able to get going and Stokes yet again bowling Kallis for 94. South Africa was still in the contest but had lost all momentum. With 10 overs left in the match, Faf and Rhodes needed 12+ runs an over. Going by Rhodes's last performances, he was more than up to the task.

              Rhodes and Faf didn't hang around too long thanks to some brilliant death bowling by Gough and Flintoff. De Kock still believed and scored a record pace 50 off just 20 balls and Pollock's cameo of 31 gave England an almighty scare. Unfortunately for the home team, they fell 23 runs short despite a huge chase of 354.

              ENG 1-377
              K Pietersen 178*, J Root 121*
              I Tahir 1-67

              RSA 6-354
              J Kallis 94, H Amla 74
              B Stokes, 3-85, A Flintoff 1-59

              South Africa lost to England by 23 runs
              K Pietersen was awarded Man of the Match.


              • #8
                Game 6: India vs New Zealand
                India XI: S Tendulkar, V Sehwag, V Kohli, R Dravid, S Ganguly, M Dhoni (c, wk), R Radeja, K Dev, A Kumble, J Srinath, J Bumrah
                New Zealand XI: S Fleming, B McCullum (wk), K Williamson (c), R Taylor, M Guptill, M Crowe, R Hadlee, D Vettori, K Mills, S Bond, T Boult
                India won the toss and elected to bowl.

                India made two changes to their squad, Ganguly for Sharma and Bumrah for H Singh. Interestingly the game chose to make Bumrah the default opening bowler. New Zealand only made one change, opting to pick Boult over Cairns to combat the explosive Indian batting lineup.

                New Zealand
                The inclusion of Bumrah in the starting XI paid dividends immediately when the quick found McCullum's outside edge in the first over and dismissed Williamson in his next over. New Zealand struggled to score runs, only finding the boundary twice in the opening ten overs of the match. Fortunately for the Kiwis, once they fended off Bumrah's opening spell, scoring became easier. Taylor made a 50 in a quick time while Fleming was not far behind.

                Fleming and Taylor's partnership put New Zealand into a positive position in the match, however, their run rate would need to lift if they wanted a competitive total against the Indian batting lineup. Kumble made the breakthrough, dismissing Taylor caught behind for 74 and would've had Fleming in the same over if it weren't for a rare drop catch from Dhoni. Fleming launched a full toss about 10 rows into the crowd for 6 to bring up his century off 122 balls, signalling his intent to push the rate of scoring up. Not even Bumrah, who had been bowling at 3.00 runs per over until now could contain Fleming, who hit the Indian quick for 14 runs off of a single over.

                Fleming's front pad was struck plumb in front by Srinath, ending his innings on 125 runs. With wickets left and not a lot of time, the Kiwis had been given the message 'go big or go home' as Crowe smashed his first two deliveries into the crowd. Guptill's innings was cut short on 44 by Srinath, who also ended Crowe's short but explosive stint at the crease in the same over. From there, the final wickets fell quickly, especially from Dev, who took the second hattrick of the tournament with the last three balls of the innings, dismissing New Zealand for 318.

                New Zealand's tactic was to bowl short to Tendulkar but that failed miserably when the Little Master pulled anything short of a length to the boundary, racing into the 20s in just a few overs. In 10 overs, India was 30 runs ahead of the par score for their chase. A change of bowling brought a change of tactic and a full, wide delivery saw an errant slash from Tendulkar that couldn't make it over the man at deep point. Sehwag at the other end also wasted little time before upping his own tempo. He reached 50 off 41 deliveries, despite a sluggish start to his innings. The stroke that led him to 50 also brought up India's 100.

                Sehwag and Kohli put on 66 runs together from mostly boundaries before Vettori drew a shaky shot from Sehwag to dismiss him for 71 runs. I'm not sure how Dravid ended up on the team, despite not being in the initial squad but his inclusion was worth it, hitting his first three balls for 4 as well as a 6 off Bond that must've gone 110+ metres. Unfortunately, his innings was short-lived when he was cleaned bowled for 19, but he helped bring the required run rate below 6 for the first time in the match. With the match now in a favourable position for India, Ganguly was able to come in and play a more supportive role for the team. The top order had done their job in reducing the required run rate but now it was up to him and Kohli to see the last 100 or so runs off 20 overs through to the end.

                Kohli had only just raised his bat for a well-earned 50 before Vettori snuck one through, rattling his stumps. An unexpected short delivery then caught Ganguly off guard and suddenly, New Zealand were back in the match. While India still has some batting left to come, their lower order is not as lofty as their top order. Dhoni looked to take the match on by himself, launching balls all around the ground despite being asked to play more defensively. In the final 10 overs, New Zealand managed to dismiss Dhoni for a quick-fire 36 off the bowling of Hadlee and kept scoring to a minimum. The equation at the 45-over mark was 48 runs needed with four wickets remaining. No matter how hard the tailenders swung, they could not hit the ball to save their own skin. Ultimately, New Zealand wrapped up the tail with two overs to spare.

                NZ 318
                S Fleming 125, R Taylor 74
                J Srinath 4-65, K Dev 3-60

                IND 282
                V Sehwag 71, V Kohli 56
                T Boult 3-43, R Hadlee 3-50

                India lost to New Zealand by 36 runs
                S Fleming was awarded Man of the Match.


                • #9
                  Game 7: Australia vs West Indies
                  Australia XI: D Warner, A Gilchrist (wk), R Ponting (c), D Jones, S Waugh, M Bevan, S Watson, M Starc, B Lee, S Warne, G McGrath
                  West Indies XI: C Gayle, G Greenidge, V Richards, B Lara, C Lloyd (c), D Ramdin (wk), D Bravo, M Marshall, J Garner, M Holding, C Ambrose

                  West Indies won the toss and elected to bat first.

                  Neither team made changes to their XI after their first-round wins.

                  West Indies
                  Despite never swinging the ball much in his career, McGrath managed to hoop one back into Gayle's stumps on the first ball of the match. Gayle was as surprised as McGrath at the amount of movement the ball had through the air. Living up to his reputation, Viv Richards followed up Gayle's golden duck with a slog over cover for 6 on the very next ball. Greenidge looked to play defensively to see out the moving new ball until McGrath hit him on the toe in front of his stumps. McGrath's perfect start continued when one that jagged away was knicked through to the keeper, dismissing the West Indies' best batsman, Richards, for just 17 runs.

                  Lara took on a more safe style of play while Lloyd looked to keep the scoreboard ticking to salvage their innings after a disaster of a start. Lloyd made a 50 and looked like he was going to go on and score a big total but McGrath came back into the attack and stopped runs altogether. There were a few chances going begging off of his bowling but it was the change of pace from Symonds that finally took the West Indies captain's wicket. The next few wickets tumbled quickly to Warne and Symonds.

                  Lee and Starc came on to take the last few wickets quickly but the West Indies tail end was able to wag quite a bit. A 30 from Marshall and a slew of boundaries from Ambrose took the West Indies' total to 221 before they were bowled out.

                  Without needing to score too quickly, Hayden and Gilchrist set out to chip away at the target steadily. While taking advantage of some poor fielding and missed chances, Australia's openers put on a 100-run partnership. In the process, they had also taken the required run rate down to just 3.7 runs per over.

                  It wasn't one of the four quickest bowlers of all time that finally broke the partnership, but Bravo, who managed to remove Gilchrist for 49 runs. Hayden brought up his century off 120 balls and Ponting reached 50 in what was ultimately a simple chase. It really should have been close though as there were four dropped catches from the West Indians!

                  WI 221
                  C Lloyd 58, B Lara 48
                  G McGrath 3-34, A Symonds 3-43

                  AUS 1-222
                  M Hayden 108*, R Ponting 51*
                  D Bravo 1-36

                  Australia defeated West Indies by 9 wickets
                  M Hayden was awarded Man of the Match.


                  • #10
                    Game 8: Pakistan vs Sri Lanka
                    Pakistan XI: S Anwar, S Afridi, B Azam, Z Abbas, Y Khan, I Khan (c), M Khan (wk), W Akram, S Mushtaq, W Younis, S Akhtar
                    Sri Lanka XI: S Jayasuriya, T Dilshan, K Sangakkara (wk), M Jayawardene (c), A Mathews, U Tharanga, F Mahroof, C Vaas, A Mendis, M Muralitharan, L Malinga
                    Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bowl first.

                    Pakistan has made two changes to their lineup, bringing in both Y Khan and S Akhtar to bolster their middle order and double down on their successful pace attack. Sri Lanka brings in Jayaruriya and Mathews after their huge defeat against the West Indies.

                    Anwar and Afridi were the only batsmen to have any success against the Aussies and they continued where they left off against the Sri Lankan quicks. The first over 6 and consecutive 4s saw both openers score at a fast rate. The 50-run partnership between them was brought up in just six overs. Anwar played one too many reckless shots and fell to Malinga for a lightning-paced 30 and then Vaas picked up Afridi in the next over after four boundaries in a row. Even though Pakistan lost a couple of early wickets, having 76 runs on the board at the 10-over mark had set them up for a significant total.

                    Abbas and Azam continued, albeit at a slower pace, but Abbas was unable to get settled and was caught behind off the bowling of Mahroof. Azam slogged a few boundaries off of Murali but the world's best offie won the battle in the end, clean bowling him. Imran and Younis Khan put on a century stand together but Younis's methodical approach didn't pay off against Vaas.

                    Imran Khan had only a long tail to work with so he began opening his blade to try to finish off what the Pakistani openers started. It ended up being too much to face every ball and as the tail around him dropped like flies, he got out playing a desperate shot. In the end, Pakistan was bowled out for a very solid 282.

                    Sri Lanka
                    Jayasuriya looked to start aggressively but Waqar Younis was one step ahead of him and struck him on the toe with a yorker, dismissing him LBW for 20. The loose cannon, Akhtar, found Dilshan's outside edge and Pakistan had the momentum going forward in the match.

                    Like the openers, Jayawardene made an aggressive start but the relentless pace of the Pakistani bowlers took its toll and Imran Khan picked up his wicket. The only batsman who was able to keep up with the four-pronged pace attack was Sangakkara who was playing beautifully square on both sides of the wicket. He picked up his 50 and was solely keeping Sri Lanka in the match as Mathews departed cheaply and Tharanga struggled to score freely against both spin and pace. Sangakkara fell to a variation from Mushtaq just as it looked like Sri Lanka was edging ahead of the par score.

                    Some flourishing shots from Mahroof brought the required run rate down to under six runs per over but he too fell to Mushtaq, putting immense pressure on the lower order to bring home a much-needed victory for the Sri Lankans. Tharanga reached 50 thanks to two dropped catches in one over. Akram would be absolutely livid at his fielders but he did knock over Vaas's stumps as consolation. With under 30 runs needed off five overs and Tharanga seeing cricket balls the size of beach balls, Sri Lanka was on the verge of a comeback. Cricket is a fickle game though and Imran Khan took three wickets in four balls to seal the match. He ended up with a 5fa to go along with his 72.

                    PAK 282
                    I Khan 72, Y Khan 44
                    C Vaas 3-44, M Muralitharan 3-63

                    SL 255
                    U Tharanga 84, K Sangakkara 70
                    I Khan 5-45, S Mushtaq 2-58

                    Pakistan defeated Sri Lanka by 27 runs
                    Imran Khan was awarded Man of the Match.


                    • #11
                      Round 1 Results
                      Round 2
                      RSA vs ENG
                      IND vs NZ
                      AUS vs WI
                      PAK vs SL

                      Current Standings
                      Group A Played Wins N/R NRR Total
                      New Zealand 2 2 0.88 4
                      England 2 1 -0.29 2
                      India 2 1 -0.34 2
                      South Africa 2 0 -0.45 0
                      Group B Played Wins N/R NRR Total
                      Australia 2 2 0.74 4
                      West Indies 2 1 0.89 2
                      Pakistan 1 1 -0.06 2
                      Sri Lanka 1 0 -1.65 0
                      Tournament Stat Leaders
                      Batsman Runs Bowler Wickets
                      S Fleming 223 B Lee 7
                      J Root 218 J Srinath 6
                      K Pieterson 183 R Hadlee 5
                      J Kallis 168 D Bravo 4
                      R Taylor 143 K Dev +7 others 4

                      Round 3 Fixture
                      Round 3
                      RSA vs NZ
                      IND vs ENG
                      AUS vs SL
                      PAK vs WI


                      • #12
                        Game 9: South Africa vs New Zealand
                        South Africa XI: H Amla, G Smith (c), J Kallis, A de Villiers, J Rhodes, Q de Kock (wk), S Pollock, D Steyn, I Tahir, M Ntini, A Donald
                        New Zealand XI: S Fleming, B McCullum (wk), K Williamson (c), R Taylor, M Guptill, M Crowe, R Hadlee, D Vettori, K Mills, S Bond, T Boult
                        New Zealand won the toss and elected to bowl

                        South Africa bolstered their bowling lineup with Ntini coming in for du Plessis, hoping that would be enough to turn their fortunes around after two disappointing losses.
                        New Zealand will be aiming to continue their winning streak with an unchanged team.

                        South Africa
                        First blood went to the Kiwis when Amla scooped a stock delivery from Bond to mid-off. This was followed by a miscued flick off the legs from Kallis and in the space of a few overs, New Zealand had removed South Africa's two most successful batsmen so far in the tournament. After the loss of two wickets, Smith bunkered down to ensure a collapse didn't happen and didn't score for almost 20 straight deliveries. Once the opening bowlers were out of the attack, he started to score freely for the first time in the tournament.

                        Smith and de Villiers put on more than 70 runs before Boult broke the partnership when de Villiers chased after an outswinger that caught his edge, and then two balls later bowled Smith with an inswinger. Mills trapped Rhodes LBW and the South Africans were now regretting dropping a batsman in favour of an extra bowler. De Kick should've been out but was given a life due to a dropped catch and went on to make a 50 while trying to salvage the South African innings. Pollock was dismissed for the first time in three innings, exposing the long tail end of the batting lineup with 15 overs left.

                        Facing as many deliveries as possible to protect the tail is always a double-edged sword and while de Kock was able to add a few more runs to his team's total, another inswinging yorker from Boult got past his defences. Thankfully for the Proteas, their Steyn and Tahir were able to put on quite a few runs in the last 13 overs. The tail wagged for almost 70 runs and survived until the end of the innings, giving South Africa a respectable lead of 253.

                        New Zealand
                        With a stacked bowling lineup, South Africa had a bit of confidence going into defending a lower-than-average total and that confidence was only boosted when McCullum was bowled by Donald for a duck. Donald and Ntini seemed to be unplayable, restricting New Zealand to just 26 runs in the first 10 overs, though they were unable to take any more wickets in that time.

                        Steyn's express pace was too much for Williamson, who managed to only make six runs from 24 balls and Taylor was bowled by Pollock for just one. As the match progressed, batting was starting to get easier. Fleming continued his excellent form, reaching a steady 50 off 77 balls while Guptill was finding the boundary relatively often. Just as New Zealand was getting ahead in the match, Tahir produced what will probably be Ball of the Tournament when he bowled the left-handed Fleming around the wicket with a wrong-un. He then followed this up with Guptill's wicket, bringing New Zealand back to their knees.

                        Pollock and Tahir made severe inroads into the Kiwi's tail end and dried up any run-scoring opportunities. Steyn easily took the last couple of wickets and South Africa had their first win of the tournament while New Zealand suffered their first defeat.

                        RSA 9-253
                        Q de Kick 60, G Smith 45
                        T Boult 4-63, K Mills 2-40

                        NZ 155
                        S Fleming 63, Guptill 47
                        D Steyn 3-18, S Pollock 3-28

                        South Africa defeated New Zealand by 98 runs
                        I Tahir was awarded Man of the Match.


                        • #13
                          Game 10: India vs England
                          India XI: S Tendulkar, V Sehwag, V Kohli, R Dravid, Y Singh, M Dhoni (wk, c), R Jadeja, K Dev, A Kumble, J Srinath, J Bumrah
                          England XI: K Pietersen, G Gooch, J Root, J Trott, E Morgan, B Stokes, J Buttler (wk), A Flintoff (c), I Botham, G Swann, J Anderson
                          India won the toss and elected to bowl first.

                          India makes one change, bringing in Y Singh for Ganguly while England has opted to bring in Swann for Gough to take advantage of the sub-continent spin conditions.

                          There has never been a duller start to an ODI in the history of cricket. No chances, a couple of boundaries and a lot of defensive play from both teams. England is 0-32 at the end of the fielding restrictions. Kumble finally broke the tedium, catching Pietersen's edge and finally breathing some life into the match.

                          While the Indians were finally up and about, Kumble caught Root half-asleep and trapped him LBW a couple of overs later. Gooch was playing patiently and found his time to strike, scoring three consecutive boundaries off a Kumble over. Before those three 4s, there had only been 10 boundaries in 30 overs, eight of which came from Gooch's bat. Gooch brought up his 50 and he and Trott were starting to look to score more runs before the final stages of the innings. Of course, just as things started going England's way, Kumble struck again, removing Trott. He would've had two from two if Kohli had hung on to a slips catch. Kohli made up for it a few overs later, taking a blinder of a catch that flew off Morgan's edge. Stokes was the next English batsman unable to make a start but at least Gooch remained stalwart at the other end scoring at a steady pace. He'd need to be there at the end if England were to reach a defendable target.

                          Gooch was dropped in the 90s and then brought up his century three balls later with a 6 flicked off of his pads. The couple of overs had been bountiful for Gooch who went from 80-100 in the space of fewer than 10 balls. It was Dev who finally managed to dismiss the centurion with a fast, straight delivery that cannoned into Gooch's front pad, hopefully putting a stop to any English notion of scoring 10+ runs per over for the last five overs of the innings. The last four wickets fell for just 15 runs and England were all out for just 224.

                          Tendulkar and Sehwag looked to get India off to a fast start, quickly making a 50-run stand. Tendulkar slowed down when Sehwag was dismissed for 44 but India was well and truly on the way to winning by that stage. Tendulkar was dismissed for 61 off 78 balls but Dravid came in without missing a beat, scoring three consecutive 4s off his first three deliveries.

                          At the halfway point of the innings, India was 2-142 and had 25 overs to score the remaining 83 runs. Swann managed to slide one through Dravid's defences but there wasn't much else to celebrate as Kohli and Dhoni raced towards England's total with 10 overs to spare, giving the net run rate a significant boost.

                          ENG 224
                          G Gooch 108, K Pietersen 30
                          A Kumble 3-44, K Dev 3-47

                          IND 4-228
                          V Kohli 72*, S Tendulkar 61
                          G Swann 3-58, I Botham 1-57

                          India defeated England by 6 wickets
                          V Kohli was awarded Man of the Match


                          • #14
                            Game 11: Australia vs Sri Lanka
                            ​Australia XI: M Hayden, A Gilchrist (wk), R Ponting (c), D Jones, M Bevan, S Watson, A Symonds, M Starc, B Lee, S Warne, G McGrath
                            Sri Lanka XI: S Jayasuriya, T Dilshan, K Sangakkara (wk), M Jayawardene (c), M Atapattu, U Tharanga, F Mahroof, C Vaas, A Mendis, M Muralitharan, L Malinga
                            Australia won the toss and elected to bat first.

                            Australia has brought in Watson for Hussey to have a potential sixth bowling option. Sri Lanka picked Atapattu over Mathews, hoping for more batting depth.

                            Hayden and Gilchrist looked comfortable at the crease against Malinga and Vaas to being with, bringing up a 50-run partnership fairly quickly. Though there were some swings and misses and thick edges for 4, the Sri Lankan bowlers didn't trouble the Aussie openers at all. In Vaas's seventh over in a row, he jagged one off the seam into Hayden's stumps to break the growing partnership.

                            Ponting found his touch immediately against Mendis, slogging five 4s in an over! The 20 runs off this over is the most expensive over in the tournament so far. Gilchrist brought up a run-a-ball 50 and Australia were cruising at almost seven runs per over. Ponting brought up his own 50 with an on-drive for 6 but Murali suffocated runs at the other end, stifling Australia's run-rate.A frustrated Gilchrist tried to hit Mendis out of the ground but was clean-bowled instead for 76. Jones tried to continue the trend of hitting Mendis all over the place but after three boundaries in an over, he miscued one straight down the throat of mid-on. Next to strike was Mahroof, dismissing Bevan cheaply and what was looking to be a 350-400+ score, was now looking closer to 300.

                            Ponting missed out on a 100 yet again, knicking one through to Sangakkara and Malinga removed Symonds before he could do too much damage. Malinga and Mahroof proved too difficult for the tail to make many runs off they ultimately restricted Australia to 280, giving Sri Lanka a sniff at the biggest upset of the tournament.

                            Sri Lanka
                            The Sri Lankan openers took two very different approaches to the chase. Jayasuriya looked to score most of his runs through boundaries, while Dilshan looked to preserve his wicket at all costs. The two openers made the Aussie quicks look sluggish and raced away to be in a commanding position.

                            Symonds came in to rest the tiring quicks and his change of pace got the wicket of Jayasuriya immediately after he passed 50. Dilshan followed his partner back to the sheds in the next over and soon enough, the match was in a balanced position. McGrath came back into the attack to try to stem the flow of runs and picked up two further wickets in the process. At the other end, Sangakkara was hitting Warne all over the park. Warne had the last laugh when he had Sangakkara caught on the boundary for 41.

                            From then, it was just a matter of wrapping up the tail, which Warne and Starc managed to do with ease. Even Watto chimed in with a wicket after Warne bowled the last of his 10 overs.

                            AUS 8-280
                            R Ponting 89, A Gilchrist 76
                            F Mahroof 2-49, L Malinga 2-60

                            Sri Lanka 191
                            S Jayasuriya 52, K Sangakkara 41
                            M Starc 3-41, S Warne 3-46

                            Australia defeated Sri Lanka by 89 runs
                            R Ponting was awarded Man of the Match.


                            • #15
                              Game 12: Pakistan vs West Indies
                              Pakistan XI: S Anwar, S Afridi, B Azam, Z Abbas, I ul-Haq, I Khan (c), S Malik, M Khan (wk), W Akram, S Mushtaq, W Younis
                              West Indies XI: C Gayle, D Haynes, V Richards, B Lara, C Lloyd (c), C Hooper, D Ramdin (wk), D Bravo, C Walsh, M Holding, C Ambrose
                              West Indies won the toss and elected to bowl.

                              Knowing they're going up against one of the best bowling lineups the world has ever seen, Pakistan added Malik to their team as an extra batsman, knowing they have him and Afridi who can support their frontline attack. The West Indies, on the other hand, made a few big changes. Marshall and Garner were dropped for Walsh and Hooper. Hooper was included to be a spin option in the subcontinent and Walsh was to rotate the pace bowlers. Haynes also replaces Greenidge after a couple of failed starts.

                              A punch off the backfoot for 4 from Anwar set the tone for the start of Pakistan's innings. Both he and Afridi took a liking to the West Indian quicks and were already scoring at six runs per over once the fielding restrictions were lifted. Afridi could probably count the defensive shot he played in his career and he got out playing a tame block, he'll never play one again. Azam fell two balls later, giving Holding a double wicket maiden to bring the West Indians back into the match.

                              The wickets didn't deter Anwar from continuing towards 50 and Abbas wasn't too far behind but fell short when he was run out for 43. Younis Khan matched Anwar boundary for boundary but as Bravo has done all tournament, he managed to break the partnership. Imran Khan joined Younis Khan at the crease to try to push Pakistan to a 300+ total.

                              Gayle tried rolling his arm over and found some success, picking up Younis Khan's wicket the ball after he reached 50. Gayle found even more success in his next over, dismissing Imran and Moin Khan in consecutive balls. Without much firepower left in the tank, Pakistan limped to the end of 50 overs but thanks to a great start, managed to make 277 runs against the quickest pace attack ever.

                              West Indies
                              Haynes was the aggressor in the opening partnership. Surprisingly, Gayle did hit a boundary until after 12 overs had passed. Haynes bought up his 50 with a hoik over deep point for 6 but fell soon after to Mushtaq. Gayle reached 50 soon after and Viv Richards had already begun lifting the run rate to make light work of the chase.

                              Malik managed to stop the onslaught when he drew an errant shot from Gayle, removing him for 68. This tournament has been difficult for batsmen to go on to make a big score after reaching 50 and Richards demonstrated this when he edged a ball off the bowling of Malik for 52. Lara had raced quickly into the 20s so the West Indies had plenty of time left to score the final 75 runs.

                              Khan and Akram were not going to make it easy for Pakistan though. They took four wickets in four overs to bring Pakistan down to just two wickets remaining to score 20 runs. Akram was unplayable and under the pressure of surviving and scoring the last few runs, Holding ran himself out leaving Lloyd and Ambrose as the last two standing to make 18 runs from 18 balls. Khan found an outside edge that fizzed past slip for four and then Lloyd chose to take a single on the second last ball of the over. Khan needed just one ball to win the match with a searing inswinger that crashed into the stumps leaving Lloyd stranded and just 13 runs short.

                              PAK 7-277
                              S Anwar 65, Y Khan 51
                              C Gayle 3-44, M Holding 2-30

                              WI 264
                              C Gayle 68, D Haynes 56
                              W Akram 3-36, I Khan 2-32

                              Pakistan defeated West Indies by 13 runs
                              W Akram was awarded Man of the Match.