Sport tends to provide us with legends, stories and personalities alike, which we adore and adulate. Over the years, though, we have developed this habit of over rating the past – where we tend to recollect with much passion and gusto sporting achievements that we were a witness to; Some of these tend to be not factually accurate. As overwhelming as the narrative becomes, it’s perhaps unfair to be presented with twisted and at times false pieces of information.
Upon introspection thus, we came across several reputed and widely recognized sporting myths and decided to debunk them.
Chasing 272 to win in their crucial Super Sixes match against South Africa in the 1999 World Cup, captain Steve Waugh was waging a lone battle. Albeit on 56, it all seemed likely to end as he offered a simple chance to Herschelle Gibbs at mid-wicket. Gibbs caught it, but in his haste to throw it up in celebration, dropped the ball. He went on to score 120 and the Aussies won with two deliveries to spare.
The media consequently ran a story the next day of how Waugh said, “You've just dropped the World Cup” to Gibbs. It almost provided the world with a perfect catchphrase. The only problem with the whole incident, though, is that Waugh never uttered those words!
“I never heard him say that,” asserted Gibbs in a press conference almost a decade later.
Waugh cannot quite recall exactly what came out either. In his book Out of My Comfort Zone he recalls it as “I hope you realise that you have just lost the game for your team,” but in a TV interview given a few years later it became “You realise you've just cost South Africa the match?”
Either way, it was a drab, more mundane version than what was attributed to him.
“It's amazing how things get written and turned around,” said Waugh later in an interview. “It's funny how people start believing in these things, I don't know how it got out in the press that I said that.”