Thursday, May 6, 2010

A perfect contest

Well after yesterday's encounters involving Australia and Bangladesh on one side and South Africa and Afghanistan on the other, the initial round robin stage of the world T20 ended needless to be said. At the same time, this was one such contest where all the teams entered the second stage of a world cup which was the first time since the 1996 world cup held in the sub continent. And since that world cup, some of the teams have found to disappoint the tournament lovers which would have expected them to make it to the next stage. Of course, the ICC Champions trophy can be luckily excluded from the list.

In the 1996 world cup, all the eight test playing nations (excluding Zimbabwe) made their presence in the quarter finals of the tournament. And since then in every world cup played thereafter, either of the eight test playing nations have been found to miss out due to negligence in the early stages of the tournament. In the 1999 world cup, West Indies, Sri Lanka and England missed out from the super sixes while Zimbabwe made it there at England's cost with India underestimating the Zimbabweans for which not only did India pay the price but also did England after South Africa lost to Zimbabwe.

And in the 2003 world cup, the finalists of the previous world cup in 1999 - Pakistan made an early exit along with South Africa, England and West Indies. In addition to these teams failing to make it there,there were teams like Kenya and Zimbabwe which undeservedly made it to the super sixes. Likewise, Kenya even marched on to the semi finals at the cost of New Zealand which had forfeited their pool match to them after they decided against touring Nairobi and Kenya cashed in from Sri Lanka who mistook the non test playing nation. As a matter of fact, it was this match that proved costly for Sri Lanka which saw then face Australia in the semis.

And in the 2007 world cup played in the Caribbean, India and Pakistan made an early exit from the world cup giving Bangladesh and Ireland a chance to make it to the super eights. This was once again a bad patch for the tournament, with India and Pakistan being better teams than the West Indies and England who could win just one match that was worth noting. West Indies won a match against Pakistan in the initial stage while England won a match against West Indies in the super eights. And, if the three editions of the world T20 are considered, West Indies lost the plot in the 1st with Australia in the 2nd. In return for this, Bangladesh and Ireland cashed in respectively.

And now there is no non-test playing nation winning a match against a test playing nation. Now, with all major test playing nations found making it to the super eights, one can be expect there to be a real contest.

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