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The Financial Express

Memorable surprise wins in the history of World T20


Photo: ESPNCricinfo Photo: ESPNCricinfo

The ICC T20 World Cup is well underway. Over the years, this tournament has had its fair share of dramas. 

The shorter the format, the more the thrill as teams can turn things around in an instant. Hence, a number of upset wins in this format are produced. 

We take a look at some of the biggest surprise wins that we have witnessed in the previous 6 editions of the T20 World Cup.

Zimbabwe vs Australia, 2007

Zimbabwe’s victory over Australia in the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup is perhaps the biggest upset on this list. 

This was an Australian side that had just won the 50 over ICC World Cup a few months back. It boasted the likes of Gilchrist, Hayden and Ponting. Yet the batting misfired that day as Australia somehow limped to a score of 138 for 9 in their allotted 20 overs. 

Zimbabwe secured the win in a dramatic fashion in the penultimate ball of the game. Brendan Taylor perfectly anchored the innings for an unbeaten 60 of 45 balls to shock the Australians.

Bangladesh vs West Indies, 2007

The very next match in the ICC T20 World Cup 2007 after the Zimbabwe-Australia game produced another surprise win. 

Bangladesh back then were minnows compared to the West Indian team that had players like Gayle, Chanderpaul, Lara and Sarwan. The Caribbean men posted a total of 164, thanks to some big hitting from Dwayne Smith. 

The Tigers were able to chase the score down easily with 12 balls to spare thanks to Aftab Ahmed’s 62 from 49 balls and Ashraful’s historic knock of 61 from 27 balls. His 50 off 20 balls that day was the fastest T20I 50 till then. 

Netherland vs England, 2009 and 2014

Netherlands defeated hosts of the 2009 T20 Word Cup, England in the opening match of the tournament. Chasing 163, the men in orange achieved their target in the very last ball of the game. 

Lightning did strike twice as the Dutch had got the better of the 3 Lions again in the 2014 edition of the tournament. Netherland’s Mudassar Bukhari generated an English batting collapse with figures of 3-12 as they defeated England by 45 runs. England got all out for 88 and later exited the tournament from the group stage.

Afghanistan vs West Indies, 2016

Afghanistan produced a bolt from the blue in the 2016 edition of the T20 World Cup when they beat the West Indies. It was the Caribbean side’s only defeat in the entire tournament as they would eventually go on to lift the trophy that year. 

Defending only 123 runs, Afghanistan spinners spun a web around the Windies big hitters as the Afghans managed to win the game by 6 runs.

Hong Kong vs Bangladesh, 2014

Hong Kong had upset the hosts of the 2014 edition of the ICC T20 World Cup, Bangladesh in the qualifiers. Bangladesh were cruising for 85-3 when a sudden batting collapse left the Tigers defending a paltry total of only 108 runs. 

On a slow Chattogram pitch, Hong Kong found it difficult to score. They lost 8 wickets but still managed to go over the line with 2 balls to spare. It was a historic occasion for the associate nation and is considered one of the biggest upsets of the T20 World Cup.

The likes of Oman, Scotland, Namibia, Papua New Guinea, Netherlands and Ireland will be contesting this year’s World Cup. As a neutral fan, one would hope that these teams manage to create a few more surprises this year as well.

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