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Flashback to One of the greatest One-day games in Indian Cricket History

13th July 2002, will be written in the history book with the golden words as team India had played one of the greatest games of cricket the natwest trophy final 2002.

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Last updated: 13.07.2020
Flashback to One of the greatest One day games in Indian Cricket History | Sports Social Blog

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Highlights:

 

  • First-century of Nassir Hussain after the 72 Innings

  • One of the greatest games in the history of the Indian cricket team

  • The intention was clear from Sourav Ganguly that we are here to play some serious cricket.

  • Evolution of underdogs to overnight heroes Mohammed Kaif and Yuvraj Singh

  • This famous game was a glimpse of the world cricket that young team India has arrived. So beware!

 

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Teams

India

Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Dinesh Mongia, Mohammad Kaif, Yuvraj Singh, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra, Zaheer khan

England

Nick Knight, Marcus Trescothick, Nasser Hussain, Michael Vaughan, Andrew Flintoff, Paul Collingwood, Ronnie Irani, Ashley Giles, Darren Gough, Alex Tudor, Alec Stewart

 

13th July 2002, will be written in the history book with the golden words as team India had played one of the greatest games of cricket. As a fan I haven't really expected that rare spirit of passion from the team India after it was very cleared at one stage 146/5. Before we get into this “Top Notch” game as a cricket aficionada I would say game of cricket has changed so much in the last two decades. If I have to choose few games in Indian cricket history which have changed the team India Image at the world level then I would say:

 

  • India vs Pakistan world Cup 2003, Group Stage

  • India vs Pakistan world Cup final, 2007

  • India vs England Oval ODI, 2007

  • India vs Australia 2001, Kolkata Test match

  • India Tour of Pakistan, 2004 ( Remember for only Virender Sehwag) 3-2 in ODI series and 2-1 in Test series

 

I know many will disagree with my choice of selection but to be honest the intensity, drama and emotions in these encounters were top notch. I know how can I miss 1983 world cup final and that Sharjah match where Sachin was on the another level but not disrespecting anyone's sentiments I have just put my best matches of Indian cricket history.

 

Without any further delay let us jump into that famous encounter and refresh our memories for one more time.

 

Before the match I was really expecting India team to win the toss and set some good total on the board for the fans across the world to cheer on in the final. But as expected India lost the toss and England team have decide to bat first I don't know how many enthusiast but for a while after the toss I thought it will impossible for team India to chase down 290+ score on this ground. I was very clear about my intuitions they have strong batting line up and they will definitely put big score for team India to pursue.

 

England Innings:

As the lord's ground screen showed the openers Marcus Trescothick and Nick knight moved towards the crease with some clear intentions to give destructive start. The openers were in the dangerous mood from the first ball. But after a while we have seen Nick knight was not looking good as India Team gets its first wicket after Zaheer khan clean bowled Nick knight when England team was on 42/1.

 

Marcus Trescothick and Nassir Hussain 185 Runs Partnership:

For a while Indian fans were jumping into the air as the England lost their first wicket. But they didn't thought this will make Indian bowlers real tough to get the next wicket. And that's what happened the right handed pair destroy the Indian class bowlers everywhere in the ground and setting up the momentum for the other players to make big score on the board. The pair started slowly to score but once they have got settled and Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly have tired 7 different bowlers including him to break this partnership but nothing have happened. Marcus Trescothick after the scoring his century looking more dangerous and heading towards the 150 mark but in trying to sweep away the ball of Anil Kumble over he got out at 116 runs. As the wicket goes down the Andrew Flintoff moved to crease looked like he will take some time to settle but scene was something else as he cleared his intentions from the first ball with six down the ground from Harbhajan Singh over. But he didn’t scored much as departs on 32 runs of 40 deliveries. As on the other side Nassir Hussain looked very solid after went pass 50 runs and turned into the more aggressive touch. After smashing the century Nassir Hussain showed some emotion gesture towards the fans after his helmet and punching his bat on his  T-shirt at No 3 the message was clear to pundits who were questioning his ability to bat at that number. It was really emotional gesture which even kept the audience got emotional. While he got departs on 115 runs on Ashish Nehra last ball of the over. The very next ball of Zaheer khan cleaned the stumps of senseless Michael Vaughan and sent back to the dressing room. As the fans were expecting the bowlers will restrict them under 300. But the momentum was in England team and that’s what their lower order batsman did that day as Paul Collingwood and Ronnie Irani took the score to 325 the highest ever in lord's ground. The match was over as most of the fans turned off the TV sets but this format of ODI perfectly denotes the meaning of ODI that “One day” can change things forever.

Innings break:

Most of the aficionada were expecting across the globe if there will be rain the target will be reduced to some less runs than on the board if India team didn't lose wicket in first 10 overs. But we have seen the rare scenes of Sourav Ganguly Saying to his team that “we have to chase this target” and I think that’s makes the one of the best Indian captain with strong attitude towards the opponents in those early days of 2002. The seeds of the serious level cricket playing ability was started by Sourav Ganguly.

Indian Innings:

As the Indian openers Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag were on the ground as everyone was expecting some explosive start from the Ideal opener Virender Sehwag but it didn't happened. I am still so clear and still it so vivid in my thoughts first time ever I have seen the different side of Sourav Ganguly when he moved down the pitch and smashing the balls over the batsman against the strike pacers. There were few of the best hits from the Ganguly but the best one was to the Andrew Flintoff over the covers for the six. I think here intentions were cleared from Sourav Ganguly that “Battle is on”. As they have reached 100 runs in just 80 balls. At the one moment fans thought it will be easy now for team India to go close to the target. But things worked out in England favour as India batting order collapsed down from 106/0 to 146/5. After this collapse nobody had predicted anything as most of them closed their TV sets. Because those days Indian Team relies on the shoulders of Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar only. Still there were some fans who have thought if India team go pass 200 it will be enough for us to show some fighting spirit. But as this ODI game is all about “One Day” and that’s what happened.

 

Story of Underdogs to Over Night heroes:

Mohammed Kaif and Yuvraj Singh both were very young in the team and no one has thought they will put some fight in the match against the England pace attack. But I think chance was there and they knew if we have crossed this line it will be everything. They have started pretty slow but after the while they have started to play some another level of cricket and the way Yuvraj Singh took the aerial route and sending the balls over the boundary line was remarkable. Both the batsman have added 121 run partnership for the 6th wicket in the final at lord's ground and keeping the required run rate in chaseable which was impossible to believe by everyone around the world but the message was clear young India team has arrived. So beware! At the score of 69 runs Yuvraj Singh departs with team India still needed 59 runs from 50 balls. While all set Kaif and young chap Harbhajan Singh took the team India score over 300 with required run rate less than 6. As the picture was saying India Team will chase this target before 50th over. But again there was the turn around when Harbhajan Singh departs on Andrew Flintoff ball with team India score 314 but it gets more serious when the Anil Kumble gets out after two balls with no score on the board. With this equation comes down to the 12 runs required of 13 balls as team India was on 314/8. The commentator Ravi Shastri in the commentary box was saying anything is possible win, loss or draw guys. Just keep the emotions up.

 

The last two overs Drama:

 

Darren Gough comes into the action to bowl the 49th over of the match it was going the all good till the 5th delivery of the over but there was one more turn around as the last ball of Darren Gough over went for the four while Kaif knick the ball and it had went over the third man for a boundary. With that Team India now needs 2 runs in 6 balls to chase In the final over of the game. With Andrew Flintoff going to ball the final over most of the Indian fans have crossed his fingers to get 1 run anyhow so that we can't lose from here. The first balls were dot as Zaheer khan misses to score any run and fans were shouting in the lord's ground Team India we will not let you go from the ground if you don't pass the line. But the next ball have written script for the coming generation to learn something. Zaheer khan push the ball to the covers area and Kaif shouts Zaheer for a run in between the wickets for a while it looks like another wicket is goes down when England player throw the ball to wicket but don't know how it misses the stumps and went for the over through while Kaif and Zaheer khan moved for another runs and took the India team for one of the greatest victories in Indian Cricket history. They both jumped into the air and showed there emotional gesture towards each other while kept everyone gets in tears. But scene of lord's balcony was something we can't describe in words when bear chested Sourav Ganguly took his T-shirt and waving it off in air. I think he was clear we are to play to serious cricket don't take us light. It was really not Team India cup of team to chase down that target of 325 in those days of 2002. I think it was one of the those encounters which have changed the face of Indian cricket team.


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