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5 exciting cricket matches that were ruined by rain

Exciting finishes to cricket matches that never happened courtesy of the rain gods.

Mark Boucher
Rain always is a big issue in cricket matches

The American poet Henry Longfellow once said, ‘The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain’. Well, cricket lovers would definitely disagree with Longfellow on this. One thing that lovers of the game hate to see when a good match is on – is the skies opening up. So many cricket matches which promised so much were halted by rain.

Although a dead rubber, the last Test of the series between England and Sri Lanka at Lord’s was evenly poised when Sri Lanka, finally showing some mettle, threatened to chase down a daunting 362 on the last day to salvage pride after being outdone by a clinical England side in the first two matches.

However, the weather gods intervened and thanks to little cricketing action on the last day, the Test meandered to a draw. Here, we look at matches across different formats that were brutally cut short by rain when they promised nail-biting finishes.


#1 South Africa vs England, Sydney, 1992

South Africa vs England
South Africa was denied a chance to appear in the final of the 1992 World Cup by a farcical rain rule

It looked like a fairy tale for South Africa as long as it lasted. After their readmission into international cricket, the South Africans seemed to be on a mission to rub it in the faces of those who kept their cricketing talent away from the international stage.

And it all seemed to be going fine for them until that excruciating moment when it started raining during the semi-final. With five overs remaining, the Proteas needed 47 to win, The equation changed to 22 from 13 balls when the rain grew heavier.

England, sensing a win, complained of a wet ball being too difficult to handle, while Brian McMillan and Dave Richardson insisted that they’ll play. However, proving that there are no fairytale endings, the match came to a point where South Africa were asked to score 22 runs off 1 ball.

Not many know that the farcical method used to adjust scores in rain-affected matches, was a brainchild of legendary Australian cricketer and commentator Richie Benaud and was done away with away with after the tournament for good.

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