Cricket can sometimes be a very strange game; with bizarre moments and weird antics sometimes leaving the fans clueless. Here are the top 5 bizarre moments from the cricket World Cup history over the years.
Gatting’s moment of madness
England were cruising to the title in 1987 against Australia in the finals at Kolkata until captain Mike Gatting handed the initiative back to Australia. Chasing 254, England were at 135 for 2, and the Aussies brought Allan Border to test the pair. Gatting - known for his solid technique - reverse swept the first delivery from Border. The ball hit his shoulder and flew to the keeper Greg Dyer. This bizarre attempt to try something different left England reeling, and they eventually lost the game.
Rain delay costs South Africa
England advanced to the finals yet again in 1992 after winning the semis against South Africa controversially. At Sydney, a 12-minute rain delay saw the Proteas’ target change from 22 in 13 balls to 22 in one ball. This rule was replaced for one-day international matches in Australia after the 1992 tournament, with the Duckworth-Lewis method coming into effect for the 1999 event onwards.
A run-out that crashed hopes
The most dramatic finish in ODI cricket saw eventual champions Australia scrape through to the finals on the net-rate run against South Africa in 1999. Both teams were bowled out for 213. Lance Klusener bludgeoned his way to 31 in 14 balls, and just when it seemed that the Aussies would be knocked out, a rush of blood saw Allan Donald run-out with two balls to spare as Australia celebrated.
Farcical ending in Barbados, 2007
Australia were the first side to win three successive finals when they won against Sri Lanka by 53 runs in 2007. The world champions began their celebrations when Sri Lanka accepted the offer of bad light at 206 for 7 chasing 281 and walked off. As the presentation ceremony was beginning, the umpires ordered the players to continue with the game and play out the remaining three overs. In pitch dark conditions, Sri Lanka played and reached 215 for 8 even as the players were barely visible.
Batham and Gooch not amused
Sir Ian Botham and Graham Gooch created a stir when they walked out of the World Cup final official pre-match ceremony after remaining unimpressed with comedian Gerry Connolly’s act in 1992. The Queen impersonator joked that the royal family was to be privatised and sponsored by Fosters. The opening pair strode out mid-meal, leaving their team-mates and a stunned audience behind them.