From Disaster to Triumph
When ICC World Cup 2015 kicks off in a little over a week a team named Pakistan will definitely dream about the repeat of Imran Khan’s cornered tigers lifting the trophy from MCG in 1992. Pakistan is the most unpredictable team in a game of glorious uncertainty. It matters which Pakistan team appears on a day. They can either appear will all guns blazing or can fall like a pack of cards. Pakistan team in 2015 world cup may not have many match winners but they definitely have several talented cricketers to compete with any team. Younis Khan , Misbah Ul Haque , Shahid Khan Afridi with monster performance can turn the tide at any time against team .If the unpredictable Pakistanis are to secure a second World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, they need the two heavyweight talents to forge a united front.
Pakistan in all world cup is discussed among the favorites. In 1975 when World Cricket limited over cricket started (60 Overs each) several Pakistan Cricket players were among the top performers in English County Cricket alongside the brilliant West Indians. They almost beat the ultimate winner West Indies in the group match which West Indies won by one wicket.
World Cup 1979: Pakistan Vs West Indies Played Played atEdgbaston, Birmingham, June 11, 1975
West Indies 267/9 in 59.4 Overs ( DL Murray 61* ,CH Lloyd 53, Sarfraz Nawaz 4/ 44,Naseer Malik 2/42) beat Pakistan 266 /7 in 60 Overs ( Majid Khan 60, Wasim Raja 58, Mustaq Mohammad 55 ,) by 1 wicket with two balls to spare .
This was one of the close fought matches in the history of world cricket. Pakistan after scoring a competitive 266/7 was cruising for victory with West Indies down to 203/9 .Wicket keeper DL Murray batting with tail ender AME Roberts valiantly fought and won the match with an unbroken 64 runs last wicket partnership. Pakistan had to exit from the tournament in the first round.
1979 World Cup: In 1979 again Pakistan put up a brave fight against very strong and ultimate winner West Indies in Semi Final.
West Indies Vs Pakistan played Kensington Oval London on 20 June 1979
West Indies 293/6 (GG Greenidge 73, DL Haynes 65 , IVA Richards 42 ,CL Llyod 37 , Asif Iqbal 4/56) beat Pakistan 250 All Out ( Zaheer Abbas 93 , Majid Khan 81 ,CEH Croft 3/29, IVA Richards 3/52 ) by 43 runs .
Chasing a target of 294 to win Pakistan was in a very strong position 5/208 but through a sudden collapse Pakistan got bundled out for 250 losing the last 5 wickets for 45 runs.
1987 World Cup
Pakistan was among the top contender in 1987 for winning the cup in 1987 when the tournament in 1987. They topped their group and played the semifinal against the ultimate winner Australia. Pakistan lost the hard fought match by 18 runs.
Semi Final: Australia Vs Pakistan played at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore on 4 November 1987.
Australia 267/8 (DC Boon 65, MRJ Valleta 48, Imran 4/36) beat Pakistan 249 All Out (Javed Miandad 70, Imran Khan 58 ,CJ Mcdermott 5/44) .
1992 World Cup
Imran’s Cornered Tiger Stunned the Cricket World:
Lady luck favored Pakistan all the way .They could be knocked out from the group stage if their match against England was not washed out. The rain ruined match led to splitting the points and Pakistan advanced to knock out round on better net run rate .
England 24/1 (8 Overs) replying against Pakistan 74 All Out. The match abandoned.
Final: Pakistan 249/6 (Imran Khan 72, Javed Miandad 58, Inzamam-ul – Haque 42 and Wasim Akram 33) beat England 227 All Out ( NH Fairbrother 62, AJ Lamb 31 , Mustaq Ahmed 3/41 Wasim Akram 3/41) by 22 runs.
Imran Khan and Javed Miandad as they did throughout the tournament set the foundation for Inzamam and Wasim to produce a competitive score of 249 at iconic MCG .England appeared to be cruising at 4/140 when incredible Wasim Akram with two magic balls turned the tide removing Lamb and Lewis on consecutive deliveries .Pumped up Pakistan wrapped up the match winning by 22 runs.
1999 World Cup:
Pakistan was firm favorites and was bull dodging all opposition till getting rocked by Rookies Bangladesh at Northampton.
Bangladesh 223/9 (Akram Khan 42, Shahriar Hossain 39, Saqlain Mustaq 5/35) beat Pakistan 161 All Out ( Azhar Mahmood 29 ,Wasim Akram 29 , Khaled Mahmood 3/39)
This loss dampened Pakistan’s morale and then they lost the final against Australia at Lords .in one sided final by 8 wickets
Australia 133/2 (AC Gilchrist 54, ME Waugh 378) beat Pakistan 132 All Out (SK Warne 4/ 33)
Pool B in World Cup 2015: India, South Africa, Pakistan, West Indies, Zimbabwe, Ireland and UAE.
The first match against India at Adelaide Oval is the key. Pakistan has never won any match against India at world cup. Neither Pakistan nor India could adjust well in Australia and New Zealand condition so far .But this may create lot of heat and great competition when it can make anyone who makes prediction a fool. The team appearing with the A game on the day will win. The winner will have advantage to surge ahead in the pool. Pakistan plays the second match against West Indies at Christchurch .Nothing can be predicted about the outcome of a match involving two of the most volatile teams of world cricket. Zimbabwe may be a tough nut to crack for Pakistan and so may be Ireland. Pakistan cannot be complacent against against the two teams. I do not think that the present Pakistan team can beat South Africa. Pakistan will possibly finish third in the group behind South Africa and India.
Date and Venue Matches
16 February 2015 ,Adelaide Oval ,Australia Pakistan Vs India
21 February 2015 Hagley Oval ,Christchurch ,New Zealand Pakistan Vs West Indies
1 March 2015 Gabba ,Brisbane , Australia Pakistan Vs Zimabawe
4 March ,2015 Mclean Park , Napier ,New Zealand Pakistan Vs UAE
7 March , 2015 ,Eden Park , Auckland ,New Zealand Pakistan Vs South Africa
15 March 2015 ,Adelaide Oval, Australia Pakistan Vs Ireland