World Cup 2019 is set to kickstart in a few days. It will be the 12th edition of the World Cup. Australia are the defending champions, while England are the host nation. The last two World Cups have been won by the host countries. Hence, No 1 ODI team England are favourites to win the tournament this time. Cricwizz takes a look at top five batting performances in World Cup history.
Ricky Ponting’s 140* against India in 2003 World Cup final
This was Ponting’s biggest knock of his ODI career. In 2003 World Cup final, Ponting batted India out of the tournament with a knock of 140*. He led his team from the front and stole the show completely. He dominated the Indian bowling attack and was severe on his nemesis Harbhajan Singh. He slammed 8 sixes and 4 fours in his 121-ball 140*. India could not recover from Ponting’s onslaught and lost the final by 125 runs.
Sachin Tendulkar’s 98 against Pakistan in 2003 World Cup
Sachin admitted later that he could not sleep for days ahead of the crucial match against Pakistan in 2003 World Cup. And he turned up a match-winning knock of 98 against a Pakistan bowling attack that comprised greats such as Wasim Akram, Shoaib Akhtar, Waqar Younis, Shahid Afridi.
Sachin unleashed his full array of strokes during his herculean knock. He uppercut a delivery from Akhtar for a six over the third man only for his disciple Virender Sehwag to repeat stoke in the same over.
Sachin’s backfoot cover drive was sheer delight. Although Akhtar denied Sachin a century, the God of Cricket has had done enough to help Indian maintain its 100 percent winning record against their arch-rivals in World Cup.
AB de Villiers’ 162* against West Indies in 2015 World Cup
ABD was at his devastating best in this match. He unleashed his full range of 360-degree strokes as he carted the West Indian bowling to all corners of the ground, especially over the square leg. He cracked 17 fours and 8 sixes during his 66-ball 162*.
He reached his hundred in 52 balls and took another 12 balls to reach 150 to mark the fastest 150 in ODIs.
It was the most savage innings ever played in World Cup. South Africa scored 80 runs in last 20 balls of their innings with ABD contributing 67 runs. SA posted 408/5 and won the match by 257 runs.
Earlier that year, ABD had posted the fastest 50 and 100 against the same opponents – West Indies during his knock of 149 at Johannesburg.
Kapil Dev’s 175 against Zimbabwe in 1983 World Cup
India chose to bat first in a must-win match against Zimbabwe to keep their World Cup hopes alive. India were soon reduced to 17/5 and stared at an early exit. In came, captain Kapil Dev and played the innings of his life, cracking 175* off 138 balls with 16 fours and 6 sixes. The next best score was 24* by No 10 batsman Syed Kirmani.
Kapil came in to bat at 4/9 and saw India to 266/8, scoring 175 runs off the 262 runs made during his stay at the crease.
Kapil then bowled 11 overs for 1/32 as India won the match by 31 runs and kept their chances alive in World Cup. India went on to win the tournament.
Unfortunately, there’s no recording of that innings as the press was on strike that day.
Sir Viv Richards’ 138* against England in 1979 final
West Indies were defending their title in 1979 World Cup and they were up against hosts England in the final. After being put into bat, West Indies faced early jolts and lost opener Gordon Greenidge for 9. They need someone to drop anchor and help the team to a big score.
Sir Viv Richards produced his finest knock of his ODI career, cracking 138* off 157 balls with 11 fours and 3 sixes to help Windies post a match-winning total of 286/9.
At 99/4, Windies were looking in danger when Richards and CL King posted a stand of 139 for the fifth wicket. King contributed 86 and helped Richards to see Windies to an imposing total. England were bowled out for 194 to hand Windies their second straight title.