5 longest losing streaks of major cricketing nations in ODIs
Winning is a habit but so is losing. Although every new match played is a fresh affair, it is never easy to move on from a loss in the previous game. At times, it turns into an inescapable cycle and the losses just keep adding up.
Almost every team has faced prolonged barren periods, or losing streaks. They have faced days when no matter how hard you try, a win eludes you. Despite the best of your attempts, everything seems to go wrong.
Such has been the fate of the Sri Lankan ODI team of late. After defeating the Pakistani team in the Test series at UAE, they fancied their chances at emulating the same in the ODI series. The hopes, however, were dashed quickly as Pakistan eased to a crushing whitewash of 5-0.
Including the nine-wicket loss on 23rd October, Sri Lanka have now lost 12 consecutive ODI matches. The streak which began with losses in last two ODIs of a bilateral series at home against Zimbabwe continued with the arrival of India. Men in blue thrashed Sri Lanka with a 5-0 scoreline and the last five matches in UAE complete 12 consecutive losses for the Lankans.
In the past, major cricketing nations have undergone similar traumatic periods. Australia and India have never lost 10 consecutive ODIs, so don't feature on this list. Here’s looking back at the teams who went on similar losing streaks.
*Sri Lanka's losing streak in 1987 (when they lost 14 ODIs) is not considered as it came in formative years of Lankan cricket in ODI.
#1- West Indies (11 losses)
The two-time world champions had to go through the ignominy of 11 consecutive losses in ODI cricket. For a period of six months starting from February 2005, the team was on the wrong side of the results.
Their streak began against Pakistan in the last stage of VB series played in the year of 2005. West Indies lost their last match of the round to Pakistan.
Next assignment for them was to face South Africa at home. Despite having a talented team at hand, West Indies ended up losing the series 0-5. South Africa chased in four of the matches and won all of them without breaking a sweat.
Only time West Indies chased was in the third ODI, which is famously remembered for the dramatic finish courtesy of Charles Langeveldt. West Indies needed only two runs off the last four balls with three wickets remaining. Langeveldt came up with the easiest solution, a hat-trick!
After that series, it was the turn of Pakistan to visit the island nations for a 3-match ODI series. On the back of some incredible all-round performances from Abdul Razzaq, Pakistan defeated West Indies 3-0.
West Indies played in the Indian Oil cup thereafter, another triangular tournament held in Sri Lanka. Due to players’ dispute with WICB, West Indies had no choice but to field an inferior team. The results obviously stayed the same as two more losses added to the tally.
The string finally got broken in a match against Sri Lanka at Dambulla.