Cricket sure is a funny game. It has happened on countless occasions that even some of the best individual performances of all time have not been able to secure a win for the team, simply because the other team emerged better in the end.
Sachin Tendulkar, who has played the highest number of ODIs till date and has the record of most ODI runs under his belt, also holds the record for most runs (6585) and the most number of centuries (14) in a losing cause, out of his total tally of 18426 ODI runs and 49 ODI centuries.
If a player scores a century and the team loses, we can be sure that the match witnessed some brilliant cricket being played, more so from the winning side, that had to bounce back after the damage caused by the ton being scored.
Here are 5 such instances where batsmen came up with brilliant knocks of over a 100 runs but could not ensure victory for their teams, and the viewers took back an amazing game of cricket.
5. Charles Coventry 194* vs Bangladesh (Bangladesh in Zimbabwe, Bulawayo, 2009)
This came as a lone contribution from the Zimbabwe player, as no one else managed to get runs in this particular match. Coventry walked in with the score at 5/1 and stayed not out when the team ended at 312 in the allotted 50 overs, only to score the highest score ever in a one-day for a losing cause.
The best partnership was that of 107 between him and Matsikenyeri who chipped in with the second best score of the innings, a mere 37.
Coventry’s innings lasted 156 balls, and he struck 16 fours and 7 sixes. He didn’t spare a single bowler who bowled to him, with some towering sixes in the long-on to mid-wicket region to Mahbubul Alam and even the captain Shakib Al Hasan who took a beating.
Coventry, who hadn’t scored an ODI century before, took advantage of the flatness of the wicket and piled up the runs. He accelerated after reaching his 100 while wickets kept tumbling at the other end.
Anyways, he would have thought that he had done enough when Zimbabwe put on 312, more than Bangladesh had ever chased before.
But it was not to be. The party was spoiled by a stunning 154 by Tamim Iqbal who fell when the score was already 279, and it was a matter of time before Bangladesh won by 4 wickets to give Zimbabwe one of the biggest upsets in their cricketing history.
Coventry was given the man of the match award.