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World Cup wounds: From Sachin Tendulkar's early dismissal to MSD's gut-wrenching run out, some memories are etched forever

From Virat Kohli to Sachin Tendulkar, 5 cricketers who failed for India in key World Cup matches 

Come the ICC tournaments, and Indian cricketers, especially the big guns, are expected to deliver for India. Sometimes it pays off, and sometimes it's a failure every fan and player would love to forget. It's safe to say that the country has had its share of major players failing in key tournaments and crunch situations.

Take, for instance, the glorious 1983 World Cup campaign. Sunil Gavaskar, the country's most-decorated batter, was supposed to be the Messiah. Unfortunately, he did little to help the side put up decent scores on the board. Instead, it was the bowlers who ensured India lifted silverware for the first time.


The pattern continued well into the next decade with some legendary names failing in crunch situations. This feature takes a look at some major Indian cricketers who have failed in key situations in a game.

#1 ICC 2003 World Cup | Sachin Tendulkar


In what could rightly be called a mammoth total to chase against Australia in the World Cup final in Johannesburg, India lost Sachin Tendulkar in the very first over. He got off the mark with a boundary only to top edge Glenn McGrath's shorter length delivery. He skied it to short- midwicket and the bowler took a comfortable catch.

Tendulkar's dismissal all but signalled the beginning of the end, but Virender Sehwag (82) and Rahul Dravid (47) delayed the inevitable.


Sourav Ganguly's men finished with 234 in their chase of 360 after Adam Gilchrist (57), Ricky Ponting (140*) and Damien Martyn (88) ran riot earlier in the match.

#2 ICC 2007 World Cup | Rahul Dravid

It was a decisive game for India when Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag walked out to bat against Bangladesh in the ICC 2007 World Cup at Port of Spain.


The Men in Blue had won their game against Bermuda, but lost to Sri Lanka. Beating Bangladesh would mean advancing to the Super Eight.

However, it all came to a bleak end after they were bundled out for 191. All eyes were on Indian skipper Rahul Dravid, leading the side in a major tournament, only for him to have a bad run with the bat, scoring 14 off 28 balls.

India eventually lost the match and were ousted from the tournament.

#3 ICC 2011 World Cup | Virender Sehwag


Virender Sehwag had a decent ICC 2011 World Cup, racking up 380 runs from eight matches that included a hundred against Bangladesh. The swashbuckling opener delivered with the bat throughout the tournament, only to be dismissed for a duck in the final against Sri Lanka at the Wankhede.

Lasith Malinga managed to skid the delivery in, rapping Sehwag flush on the pads. Though it was reviewed, he was shown to have missed the flick and that meant taking the long trudge back to the pavilion.

However, Gautam Gambhir's belligerent 97 and MS Dhoni's masterclass saw the team lift the prestigious World Cup trophy for the second time.

#4 ICC 2015 World Cup | Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli's dismissal signalled the beginning of the end for India in the semi-final against Australia in 2015

The semi-finals against Australia at the SCG were all about the hosts exacting revenge after India ousted them in the quarter-finals of the 2011 edition. They did so by registering a 95-run win to knock the visitors out of contention.

Chasing a formidable 329, Dhoni & Co. were off to a solid start. Shikhar Dhawan (45) and Rohit Sharma (34) put on a 76-run opening partnership, but after the former was dismissed, the onus was on Virat Kohli to deliver.

However, there was utter dismay for fans after Kohli was dismissed for just one run off 13 balls. Mitchell Johnson's bouncer did it for the right-hander as he top-edged it for Brad Haddin to glove it easily.

The chase was derailed despite some resistance from Ajinkya Rahane (44) and Dhoni (65).

#5 ICC 2019 World Cup | MS Dhoni

Semi Final 1. It's all over! New Zealand win by 18 runs bcci.tv/icc-cricket-wo… #IndvNZ #CWC19

Such was the Men in Blue's dominant run in England during the 2019 World Cup that they were favorites heading into the semi-finals against New Zealand. The bowlers did well to restrict the Kiwis to a modest 239 in Manchester.

But it all went woefully wrong while batting. KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli were all dismissed for one each, leaving a ton of scoring to be done by the middle order. Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya's 32 each saw some rebuilding before Dhoni (50) and Ravindra Jadeja (77) took over.

It was the innings of a lifetime for Jadeja, but the former Indian skipper struggled at the other end. With his finishing powers on the wane, Dhoni attempted to take the game as deep as possible only to find himself short of the crease after a well-set knock.

In the end, the side fell short by 18 runs, and that meant their next shot would come in 2023.

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Edited by
Ankush Das
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