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Posted: 13 March 2007 at 11:18am | IP Logged

Top 10 batsmen of the ICC Cricket World Cups

By Tushar Trivedi

Vivian Richards, Aravinda de Silva and Ricky Ponting each have had the distinction of scoring a century in the final of an ICC Cricket World Cup and making that a title-winning effort. That is something the batsman who heads this list has yet to do.

Richards, who has left a great impact on the tournament, scored a masterly unbeaten 138 that enabled the West Indies to reach 288 in the 1979 final at Lord's. They beat England, who could muster only 194.

Richards (63.31) tops the averages for the ICC Cricket World Cup, though Sachin Tendulkar heads the list of top batsmen with his 1732 runs in 32 innings. Tendulkar has the second highest average (over 59) and shares the most number of centuries (four) with Mark Waugh.

Among current players, Ricky Ponting is closest to Tendulkar with 998 runs in ICC Cricket World Cup tournaments. In the last final, his 140 helped Australia post 359 to beat India.

Tendulkar has an excellent chance of going past 2000 runs in this year's tournament given his record.

Players For Runs M Inn NO HS Ave 100s 50s 0s 90s
                       
Sachin Tendulkar Ind 1732 33 32 3 152 59.72 4 12 1 3
Javed Miandad Pak 1083 33 30 5 103 43.32 1 8 2 0
Aravinda de Silva SL 1064 35 32 3 145 36.69 2 6 2 2
Vivian Richards WI 1013 23 21 5 181 63.31 3 5 0 1
Mark Waugh Aus 1004 22 22 3 130 52.84 4 4 2 0
Ricky Ponting Aus 998 28 27 3 140* 41.58 3 2 1 0
Steve Waugh Aus 978 33 30 10 120* 48.90 1 6 0 0
Arjuna Ranatunga SL 969 30 29 8 88* 46.14 0 7 3 0
Brian Lara WI 956 25 25 3 116 43.45 2 6 1 0
Saeed Anwar Pak 915 21 21 4 113* 53.82 3 3 0 0

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Posted: 13 March 2007 at 11:19am | IP Logged

Top 10 bowlers of the ICC Cricket World Cups

By Tushar Trivedi

Wasim Akram, the finest left arm fast bowler of all time according to Sir Don Bradman, has more wickets than anybody else in ICC Cricket World Cup history. Akram took 55 wickets in 38 matches at an economy rate of just over four an over to head the top 10.

Though speedsters dominate the list -- and hold the top six spots -- Shane Warne, Muttiah Muralidaran and Anil Kumble have destroyed the myth that spinners have only a peripheral place in limited-overs cricket.

Warne, who has admitted to not being particularly fond of limited-overs cricket, has proved to be very useful to Australia not only in an attacking, wicket-taking role, as might be expected of a classical leg-spinner, but by also maintaining an excellent economy rate.

At a time when a bowler's economy ratio is said to be decent if he gives away less than five runs an over, Warne has an economy rate of 3.83.

He is joined by Aussie pace spearhead McGrath, whose 45 wickets were picked up giving away 3.82 runs an over, astonishing in the modern era when scores of 250 plus are the norm and those over 300 regularly posted.

Muralidaran, the off spinner with the finest record in Test cricket, also shines in limited-overs cricket. In 21 matches, he has picked up 30 wickets giving away an average of only 3.69 runs an over - the lowest of any bowler save England's Ian Botham. In 22 matches, Beefy got 30 wickets at an economy rate of 3.43 an over.

Players For Wkts M Mdns Runs Ave Best 5wl ER
 
Wasim Akram Pak 55 38 16 1311 23.80 5-28 1 4.04
Glenn McGrath Aus 45 28 37 935 20.80 7-15 2 3.82
Javagal Srinath Ind 44 34 21 1224 27.80 4.30 0 4.32
Allan Donald SA 38 25 14 913 24.00 4-17 0 4.17
Chaminda Vaas SL 36 21 24 754 20.90 6-25 1 4.10
Imran Khan Pak 34 28 18 655 19.30 4-37 0 3.86
Chris Harris NZ 32 28 10 861 26.90 4-7 0 4.43
Shane Warne Aus 32 17 16 624 26.90 4-29 0 3.83
Muttiah Muralidaran SL 30 21 13 693 23.10 4-28 0 3.69
Ian Botham Eng 30 22 34 762 25.40 4-31 0 3.43

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Posted: 13 March 2007 at 11:20am | IP Logged

Top ten fielders of the ICC Cricket World Cups

By Tushar Trivedi

What separates modern cricket most from the sport as it was played a generation ago is the quality of the fielding. Though average scores in ODI cricket have risen in that time, they have been pegged back by fielding that is supremely athletic.

In the 70s a cricketing phrase commonly used referred to a senior player "escorting the ball to the boundary". That is no more the case and most cricket matches produce an act of fielding that would qualify as "Play of the Day."

An example is the stunning catch that Kapil Dev took, running in a semi-circle, first sideways and then backwards, to end Vivian Richards's innings at 33 during the 1983 ICC Cricket World Cup finals.

If a catch was ever said to have won a match, that was it, one of 12 Kapil took in ICC World Cup matches. The rampaging Richards would have seen the Windies through had he been around for only a few more overs.

Ricky Ponting, who captains defending champions and tournament favourites Australia, tops the group with 18 catches in his 28 matches.

Players For CT M
 
Ricky Ponting Aus 18 28
Chris Cairns NZ 16 28
Sanath Jayasuriya SL 15 27
Anil Kumble Ind 14 35
Aravinda de Silva SL 14 35
Steve Waugh Aus 14 33
Carl Hooper WI 13 20
Clive Lloyd WI 12 17
Kapil Dev Ind 12 26
Graeme Hick Eng 12 20

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Posted: 13 March 2007 at 11:21am | IP Logged

Top 10 wicket-keepers of the ICC Cricket World Cups

By Tushar Trivedi

Modern cricket is seeing a new breed of all-rounders. They are the wicket-keepers who can bat -- and with gusto. Australian Adam Gilchrist, who can be said to be the path-breaker, has followers in India's MS Dhoni, South African Mark Boucher, Sri Lankan Sangakkara, Pakistani Kamran Akmal and New Zealander Brandon McCullum.

Adam Gilchrist, who already has 35 dismissals in 20 matches heads the list of top ten ICC Cricket World Cup wicket-keepers. Interestingly, he has two stumpings, while Moin Khan (also on 20 matches, but with 30 dismissals) has seven.

Another all-rounder, England's Alex Stewart, rounds off the top three (23 victims in 20 matches). If dismissals per match are an indicator, Ridley Jacobs (22 in 11 matches) shines, as he does also for giving away fewest byes (only 1).

Players For M CT ST Victims Byes
 
Adam Gilchrist Aus 20 33 2 35 24
Moin Khan Pak 20 23 7 30 27
Alex Stewart Eng 20 21 2 23 16
Ridley Jacobs WI 11 21 1 22 1
Mark Boucher SA 15 22 0 22 13
Wasim Bari Pak 14 18 4 22 6
Ian Healy Aus 14 18 3 21 12
Jeff Dujon WI 14 19 1 20 42
Rodney Marsh Aus 11 17 1 18 16
Kiran More Ind 14 12 6 18 15

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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Second Innings Bulletin

Scotland was crushed by reigning champions Australia in the second match of ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 on Wednesday at St Kitts.

Set a mammoth 335 to win, Scotland was never in the hunt and was all out for 131 in the 41st over to lose by 203 runs -- the second biggest margin of victory ever in the tournament.

In the middle overs Scotland dragged the match towards an end decided very early on in their innings by Australia's bowlers.

After 30 overs they had less than 100 runs on the board and had lost 6 wickets, five of them to the Aussie fast bowlers. Overs 20 through 30 were bowled without much result either by way of wickets falling or runs being scored -- and this set them apart from much of the match that was enlivened by the performance of the incumbent champions.

Aussie warhorse Glenn McGrath fired up his metronome and sent down a spell of accurate pace bowling that left Scotland in tatters at 42/5. McGrath took the last 3 of the first 5 Scots wickets to go down.

His third was a perfectly pitched ball that tempted Gavin Hamilton into a nibble that was devoured by 'keeper Adam Gilchrist.

Before that McGrath got Ryan Watson out caught hooking only to find Nathan Bracken. That was his second wicket. His first came when he bowled Fraser Watts, who played a ball from the great fast bowler onto his stumps.

Scotland lost three quick wickets before the 10th over, the first to a run out, the second to a delightfully fast ball from Shaun Tait.

Tait's scorcher flattened Navdeep Poonia's stumps in the 8th over, just two overs after putting paid to a promising innings from opener Majid Haq.

In the 6th over, with the score at 21, and Haq on 14, Shaun Tait sent down a ball that was driven to cover by Haq for a single. The resultant overthrow from

Michael Clarke gave him another run and he was run-out going for a third. Glenn McGrath sent in the throw from mid wicket that did Haq in, ending an innings that showed promise at 16.

In the same over as he was out, Haq played a gorgeous cover drive off Tait and looked comfortable against the fast bowlers in Scotland's chase.

Haq and fellow opener Fraser Watts faced the Aussie attack of Tait and Nathan Bracken, who opened the bowling. Veteran opening bowler McGrath did not get the new ball, something he had asked his captain for before the tournament began, given the absence of regular new ball bowler Brett Lee.

After Wednesday's performance, McGrath might have a point.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Symonds fit for next match

Australian captain Ricky Ponting said talismanic all-rounder Andrew Symonds was fit to play and would be considered for the next match against Holland on Sunday.

"It's a nice problem to have," Ponting said of his difficulties in deciding whom to leave out from the team that defeated Scotland with ease. Symonds, voted earlier to be part of Australia's all-time ODI team, is a hard-hitting batsman and a slow bowler.

"We will play on wickets later on in the tournament that will turn more (than the one at St Kitts)" said Ponting, commenting on whether spin would play a large part in the Australian team's strategy.

About his team's cruise to victory, Ponting said the team had "started feeling really good" and that the "wicket was really good which is something we haven't had so far on this tour."

Aussie paceman Glenn McGrath, who tore the heart out of Scotland's middle order, said the match was the "perfect way to start the campaign." McGrath said his team's bowling "could have slightly better" and the attack would "do better with time. We're getting used to the pitches."

Scotland's captain Craig Wright said his team had done well for most of the match but were defeated in some crucial overs. "The last 5 overs of their innings and the first 10 of our innings killed us," said Wright, praising his bowlers for doing "well for 45 overs against a vast batting line-up."

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Ponting ton helps Aussies to 334/6

AFP

Ricky Ponting hit the first century of the tournament as defending champions Australia put up a formidable 334-6 against Scotland in their ICC Cricket World Cup Group A match at Warner Park on Wednesday.

Ponting, who was eventually out for 113, reached his century in 85 balls hitting nine fours and five sixes -- his 23rd one-day hundred and fourth in the ICC Cricket World Cup.

Opener Matthew Hayden hit a solid 60, while Brad Hogg hitting an unbeaten 15-ball 40 with three sixes and as many fours after Scotland skipper Craig Wright had won the toss and put Australia into bat on a brownish pitch.

Ponting, dropped on 23 by wicket-keeper Colin Smith off medium-pacer Dougie Brown, took full advantage of the lapse and added 54 runs for the third wicket with Michael Clarke (15) and another 63 for the fourth with Brad Hodge (29).

Ponting never lost his rhythm even after a 35-minute rain delay as he broke Indian Sourav Ganguly's previous ICC Cricket World Cup record of 23 sixes and became the sixth man to reach 1,000 ICC Cricket World Cup runs.

Ponting is playing in his fourth ICC Cricket World Cup.

Openers Adam Gilchrist (46) and Matthew Hayden (60) set the foundation for the total by putting on 91 for the first wicket.

Hayden hit six boundaries and a six before he fell leg-before to off-spinner Majid Haq who was the pick of the Scottish bowlers with 2-49.

Gilchrist hit seven boundaries and was trapped leg-before to Brown who bowled well before conceding 24 runs in his final over to Hogg.

South Africa and the Netherlands, the two other teams in the Group, meet on Friday. The top two teams advance to the next round, the Super Eight.

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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Kenya cruise to victory

Wicket-keeper batsman Maurice Ouma and skipper Steve Tikolo hit half-centuries as Kenya got the better of Canada by 7 wickets at St Lucia.

Ouma's 89-ball knock was punctuated with 7 fours and a six while Tikolo's unbeaten knock of 72 included 7 fours and a six. Tanmay Mishra provided the finishing touches with an impressive 35.

The early dismissals of David Obuya and Ravindu Shah did give Canada a sniff but Kenya progressed easily after that initial hiccup.

Earlier, David Obuya was dismissed for 4, caught by Bagai off former West Indian fast bowler Anderson Cummins while Ravindu Shah fell leg before to Bhatti for 3.

Kenya were chasing a modest total of 199 set by Canada in 49 overs.

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