The ‘minnows’ of the cricketing world are no longer predictable. You cannot anticipate when they would turn the tables on the best team, in the process handing them a humiliating defeat.
Biggest cricket world cup upsets
Such accomplishments actually make you think whether attaching the tag minnows to them is right. Where the giants of the cricketing world strive towards adding another trophy to their kitty, the so-called minnows carry the same objective, along with crushing these giants.
The 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup will be no different, as it will see teams like Scotland, UAE, Ireland and Afghanistan participating in the event.
That being said, with a pinch of luck, you can expect disappointments since Ireland and Afghanistan are forces to be reckoned with. Here we look at past defeats that the cricketing giants have suffered at the hands of minnow teams –
Bangladesh vs. India, Group Match (2007)
The Indian team was led by Rahul Dravid and it suffered a fate that was worse than ever in its modern day cricketing history. In the group match, it competed against Bangladesh and was expected to emerge triumphant. What transpired was awful. The Indians, batting first, collapsed like a pack of cards setting their rivals a target of only 192 runs. The Bangladeshi team reached the target in the 49th over. This defeat in the opening match proved costly for India, as it lost against Sri Lanka in the third group match and was knocked out of the tournament.
Kenya vs. West Indies, Group Match (1996)
This match was what one would call a royal thrashing. Kenya was making its World Cup debut and no one would have expected them to defeat the two-time world champions West Indies. However, West Indies were already struggling even before meeting Kenya and this match could have brought them back. But things did not go as planned. West Indies, winning the toss, decided to field first and the bowlers did a remarkable job by restricting the minnows at 166. West Indies, on the other hand, got all-out on the score of 93 runs suffering a 73 runs margin defeat.
Kenya vs. Sri Lanka, Group Match (2003)
By this time, Sri Lanka had proven to the world that it was no longer a minnow by winning the 1996 World Cup. Kenya, however, had the tag attached to them as ever. Kenya was playing at home and batting first had scored 210 runs which was achievable for Sri Lanka. The hosts somehow managed to pull off another miracle as their bowlers managed to bundle out the Sri Lankans for a meagre 157 runs. Collins Obuya was the hero of the match, who ended with bowling figures of 5/24.
Ireland vs. England, Group Match (2011)
The English have always had troubles while facing minnows and the 2011 World Cup wasn’t different for them either. England and Ireland are considered cricket’s oldest rivals and Ireland looked out of the tournament when England posted a daunting total of 327 runs after batting first. While chasing the target, Ireland stumbled initially and was stranded at 106-4 when all-rounder Kevin O’Brien came to their aid. He played a stunning knock of 113 runs off just 63 balls. Ireland chased the score with five balls remaining.
India vs. West Indies, Final (1983)
By 1983, West Indies were the two-time World Cup champions and had made it to their third consecutive final. Though India had defeated the World champions in the Group Match, they were still the underdogs going into the final.
Batting first, India scored 183 runs in the allotted 60 overs. With a batting line up like that of the West Indies, the target looked easily achievable.
Kapil Dev, the captain of the Indian team then, along with his cavalry produced one of the major upsets in cricketing history, defeating West Indies by 43 runs, in the process winning the World Cup.