The 10th anniversary of India's famous 2011 World Cup win has brought back countless memories.
The Men in Blue had been without a 50-over World Cup triumph since Kapil Dev's 1983 victory, and the scars of the 2003 final against Australia were yet to heal. But India, under the leadership of MS Dhoni, made an inspirational run to the final of the 2011 World Cup, which was held in the subcontinent.
India lost only one match in the 2011 World Cup, against South Africa, while another encounter against England ended in a tie. They orchestrated victories in all the other games.
In this article, we take a look at the 3 best Indian wins in the 2011 World Cup. Understandably, knockout games have been given higher preference - not only because of the high stakes but also because of the quality of opposition.
#3 India beat Pakistan by 29 runs (2011 World Cup semi-final)
The stage was set for another epic India-Pakistan clash at Mohali on the 30th of March.
After MS Dhoni called right and opted to bat, Virender Sehwag got India off to a flier. Although the opener was back in the hut by the sixth over, his 38 off 25 balls set the tone for the innings.
Gautam Gambhir and MS Dhoni played useful cameos, but the real stars of the show were Sachin Tendulkar and Suresh Raina. While Tendulkar rode his luck, surviving multiple dropped catches and a close LBW shout, Raina got the team to a par total with very few batsmen for company.
In response, Kamran Akmal and Mohammad Hafeez got Pakistan off to a sedate but safe start, with Asad Shafiq chipping in as well. But India regularly got wickets in the middle overs, and their fierce rivals were always behind the eight ball in the chase.
All 5 Indian bowlers finished with two wickets each as Pakistan fell short by 29 runs despite Misbah-ul-Haq's fighting innings. India progressed to the final of the 2011 World Cup, and Sachin Tendulkar was named the Man of the Match.
India 260/9 (Tendulkar 85, Sehwag 38, Raina 36, Riaz 5/46) beat Pakistan 231 all out (Misbah 56, Hafeez 43, Nehra 2/33) by 29 runs
#2 India beat Australia by 5 wickets (2011 World Cup quarter-final)
India and Australia have engaged in their fair share of World Cup clashes over the years, and their contest in Ahmedabad on the 24th of March holds a special place in cricket history.
India had cruised to the quarter-final of the 2011 World Cup, while Australia got there in slightly less convincing fashion. But on the night, the teams were evenly matched, with the Kangaroos perhaps having the psychological edge due to past results.
After Ricky Ponting won the toss and opted to bat, he and Brad Haddin stitched together a brilliant second-wicket partnership after Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed Shane Watson. The Aussie skipper notched up another World Cup century against India as his team finished on 260 with some help from David Hussey.
Virender Sehwag couldn't make much of an impact, but Gautam Gambhir and Sachin Tendulkar put on a 50-run partnership to steady the ship. Tendulkar was out caught-behind while Kohli managed only 24 before falling to David Hussey, before MS Dhoni cut Brett Lee straight to point.
With Australia in the ascendancy, Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina joined forces at the crease. The southpaw duo never seemed to be under pressure, finding the boundary at will and keeping the required run rate in check at all times.
India got over the line with 5 wickets and 14 balls to spare, sealing their place in the semi-final of the 2011 World Cup. Yuvraj Singh was adjudged the Man of the Match.
India 261/5 (Tendulkar 53, Gambhir 50, Yuvraj 57*, Raina 34*) beat Australia 260/6 (Ponting 104, Haddin 53, D Hussey 38*, Yuvraj 2/44) by 5 wickets
#1 India beat Sri Lanka by 6 wickets (2011 World Cup final)
The grandest of stages in all of cricket saw India and Sri Lanka lock horns at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on the 2nd of April.
Toss drama was eventually resolved by Kumar Sangakkara electing to bat, and India were next to unplayable in the first half of the innings. Zaheer Khan and Sreesanth kept the Sri Lankan batsmen on a tight leash in the powerplay, and the top three were dismissed well before the 30-over mark for just 122.
Mahela Jayawardene was a man possessed in the 2011 World Cup final as he stroked his way to a fluent century. He, aided by some late pyrotechnics from Thisara Perera, took Sri Lanka to a challenging total.
India got off to the worst possible start as Lasith Malinga sent Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar back to the hut cheaply. Gautam Gambhir and Virat Kohli put on a fighting partnership before Tillakaratne Dilshan plucked a one-handed stunner to dismiss the latter.
The rest, as they say, is history. MS Dhoni promoted himself up the order to counter the spin threat of Muralitharan, while Gambhir notched up a match-winning 97 before an ugly slog across the line brought his knock to an end.
The Indian skipper, alongside eventual Man of the Tournament Yuvraj Singh, hit the winning runs in the 49th over. India broke their World Cup hoodoo in resounding fashion as Dhoni added the 2011 World Cup trophy to his cabinet, which already featured the 2007 T20 World Cup crown.
India 277/4 (Gambhir 97, Dhoni 91*, Kohli 35) beat Sri Lanka 274/6 (Jayawardene 103*, Sangakkara 48, Dilshan 33, Kulasekara 32) by 6 wickets