World Cup Dream XI – One best player from each edition of the World Cup
The biggest tournament in cricket “ICC Cricket World Cup” is less than 50 days away. This is the 12th edition of the tournament which is jointly hosted by England and Wales. The tournament has always produced cricket of the highest level. From Windies dominating the tournament initially to Aussies winning the cup five times, it has certainly come a long way. The first World Cup was played in 1975 in England with eight teams participating in it. The next two editions were played in the same country with the 4th edition hosted by India and Pakistan. The overs were reduced from 60 to 50 overs in this edition. While West Indies were the world champions in 1975 and 1979, India surprisingly lifted the trophy in 1983. From then on until 1996 there were three different champions (1987 – Australia, 1991 – Pakistan, 1996 – Sri Lanka). The next three editions saw Australia dominate the world cricket winning three consecutive championships. The streak ended when Australia lost to India in the 2011 World Cup quarter-final. But they came back strong, winning the prestigious cup for the fifth time in 2015. Every edition produced a star player who was key to the team’s success. Let us pick one player from every edition and build a dream XI.
#Openers - Sachin Tendulkar (2003) and Adam Gilchrist (2007)
Sachin was playing his fourth World Cup and was in desperation to win it for his team. In spite of all the hard work he put in, the team failed to snatch the victory against the mighty Aussies in the final. Sachin was always the man of big tournaments. He was the leading run-getter in the 1996 World Cup scoring 523 runs. He had a wonderful tour in 2003 World Cup with scores of 152, 98, 97 and 50 versus Namibia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and England respectively. He recorded 673 runs in 11 games, which is a record for a single edition of the tournament. Besides this, he also holds the record of scoring the most number of centuries in the tournament’s history (6).
Australia continued their dominance in the 2007 World Cup. They won all the matches in the group stage and qualified to the super eight. They cruised into the semis winning seven out of seven matches at that stage. The semifinal was a cakewalk for this team. In the final, they went on to lift their 4th trophy after defeating Sri Lanka. Adam Gilchrist’s contribution was vital in team’s unbeaten run. He scored 453 runs in 11 matches including two fifties and a hundred. His hundred in the final will go down as one of the best knocks. He was equally effective with the gloves accounting to 17 dismissals. Adam Gilchrist was a very effective keeper as well as an amazing batsman.