Six memorable moments from T20 World Cup

By: AFP      Published: 09:42 AM, 13 Oct, 2021
Cricket memories
Pakistan World Cup 2009 winner.n

The 2021 T20 World Cup gets underway in the United Arab Emirates and Oman on October 17 and runs until the final on November 14. AFP Sport looks at six memorable moments from the previous six tournaments:

Yuvraj takes route 6x6

-- At the inaugural 2007 T20 World Cup in South Africa, India's Yuvraj Singh hit six sixes in an over off the hapless Stuart Broad in a group game against England in Durban. Yuvraj had been inspired by a verbal altercation with Andrew Flintoff and he went on to lead his team to an 18-run win. India were to defeat Pakistan in the final.

Dutch courage at Lord's

-- In the 2009 tournament opener, the Netherlands pulled off a sensational four-wicket win over England at Lord's, the 'Home of Cricket', in one of the sport's greatest shocks. Chasing 163 to win, the Dutch scored two runs off the final ball. Tommy de Grooth, who made a crucial 49 for the Netherlands, said: "We set out a few months ago to achieve a few things -- and this was one. We wanted to play at Lord's, qualify for the World Cup in 2011 and beat a big nation, and I think we just did that."

Carlos Brathwaite, 'remember the name'

-- England sensed victory in the 2016 final at Eden Gardens where West Indies, chasing a 156-run target, needed 19 off the final over to be bowled by Ben Stokes. With Marlon Samuels at the other end after a crucial innings of 85 runs in 66 balls, Brathwaite launched four successive sixes into the Kolkata night sky. "Carlos Brathwaite! Carlos Brathwaite - remember the name! History for the West Indies," said commentator Ian Bishop. 

Pakistan heal wounds

-- Two years after their heartbreaking final defeat to old rivals India by just five runs in Johannesburg, Pakistan took the 2009 trophy with an eight-wicket win over Sri Lanka at Lord's. Pakistan restricted Sri Lanka to 138-6 before superstar Shahid Afridi led the run chase, hitting an unbeaten 54 off 40 balls.

Heroic Herath

-- Sri Lanka were champions of the 2014 tournament in Bangladesh but they needed all the wily skills and control of spinner Rangana Herath to just make the semi-finals. Facing New Zealand in a make-or-break qualifying game, Sri Lanka were bowled out for just 119. 

But Herath dismissed Brendon McCullum, Ross Taylor, Jimmy Neesham, Luke Ronchi and Trent Boult as the Black Caps were undone for just 60 runs. Herath claimed five wickets for just three runs.

Root, Roy star in epic chase

-- At the 2016 tournament, South Africa piled up 229-4 in Mumbai off their 20 overs with Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock and JP Duminy all making half-centuries.

At the time it was second highest-ever total at a T20 World Cup but England dug deep as Joe Root hit a 44-ball 83 and Jason Roy smashed 43 from 16 deliveries.

England lost two wickets in the last over with the scores level before Moeen Ali sealed victory with two balls to spare.

Previous champions

Previous champions in the T20 World Cup ahead of the 2021 tournament being staged in Oman and the United Arab Emirates from October 17 to November 14:

2007: India

2009: Pakistan

2010: England

2012: West Indies

2014: Sri Lanka

2016: West Indies

World Cup schedule

Schedule of matches in the T20 World Cup which takes place in Oman and the United Arab Emirates from Oct 17-Nov 14 (all times GMT):

ROUND ONE

Group A: Ireland, Namibia, Netherlands, Sri Lanka

Group B: Bangladesh, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Scotland

Sunday October 17

1000: Oman Cricket Academy Ground, Al Amerat

Oman v Papua New Guinea

1400: Oman Cricket Academy Ground, Al Amerat

Bangladesh v Scotland

Monday, October 18

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Ireland v Netherlands

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka v Namibia

Tuesday, October 19

1000: Oman Cricket Academy Ground, Al Amerat

Papua New Guinea v Scotland

1400: Oman Cricket Academy Ground, Al Amerat

Bangladesh v Oman

Wednesday, October 20

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Namibia v Netherlands

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka v Ireland

Thursday, October 21

1000: Oman Cricket Academy Ground, Al Amerat

Bangladesh v Papua New Guinea

1400: Oman Cricket Academy Ground, Al Amerat

Oman v Scotland

Friday, October 22

1000: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

Namibia v Ireland

1400: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

Sri Lanka v Netherlands

SUPER 12

Group 1: England, Australia, South Africa, West Indies, A1, B2

Group 2: India, Pakistan, New Zealand, Afghanistan, A2, B1

Saturday, October 23

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Australia v South Africa

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

England v West Indies

Sunday, October 24

1000: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

A1 v B2

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

India v Pakistan

Monday, October 25

1400: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

Afghanistan v B1

Tuesday, October 26

1000: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

South Africa v West Indies

1400: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

Pakistan v New Zealand

Wednesday, October 27

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

England v B2

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

B1 v A2

Thursday, October 28

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

Australia v A1

Friday, October 29

1000: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

West Indies v B2

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

Pakistan v Afghanistan

Saturday, October 30

1000: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

South Africa v A1

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

Australia v England

Sunday, October 31

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Afghanistan v A2

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

India v New Zealand

Monday, November 1

1400: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

England v A1

Tuesday, November 2

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

South Africa v B2

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Pakistan v A2

Wednesday, November 3

1000: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

New Zealand v B1

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

India v Afghanistan

Thursday, November 4

1000: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

Australia v B2 

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

West Indies v A1

Friday, November 5

1000: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

New Zealand v A2

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

India v B1

Saturday, November 6

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Australia v West Indies

1400: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

England v South Africa

Sunday, November 7

1000: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

New Zealand v Afghanistan

1400: Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Sharjah

Pakistan v B1

Monday, November 8

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

India v A2

Wednesday, November 10

1400: Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi

1st Semi-Final

Thursday, November 11

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

2nd Semi-Final

Sunday, November 14

1400: Dubai International Stadium, Dubai

Final

Morgan, Kohli target T20 World Cup title legacy

Five years after losing a heart-stopping T20 World Cup final to the West Indies, Eoin Morgan's England start as narrow favourites in their bid to become double world champions despite the absence of Ben Stokes.

Not far behind though are Virat Kohli's India, an ever-lethal West Indies and World Test champions New Zealand -- not to mention South Africa, Australia, former winners Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and fairytale outsiders Afghanistan.

Postponed and moved twice because of the pandemic, the tournament's seventh edition kicks off on October 17 with Oman -- joint hosts with the United Arab Emirates -- taking on Papua New Guinea in a first qualifying round.

The top nations will join the event -- played in stadiums 70-percent full -- on October 23 with Australia and South Africa playing the opener of the Super 12 stage and England up against holders West Indies.

England, ranked as the world number one nation in T20 cricket, beat New Zealand to win the 50-over title at Lord's in 2019 and victory in the shortest format's showpiece event will further cement their white-ball dominance.

Morgan's team will, however, be without Stokes and Jofra Archer, who played a key part in their one-day World Cup triumph, but vice-captain Jos Buttler insists the team is "certainly one of the favourite teams."

"I know we are missing Ben and Jofra, who are two superstars of the game, but I still look down that list and see some real match-winners in our side."

- War horses -

England had to defend 19 runs in the last over of the 2016 final at Kolkata's Eden Gardens but Carlos Brathwaite hit Stokes for four straight sixes, giving the Caribbeans their second world T20 title.

Many of that winning team will be back, led by Kieron Pollard and old war horses Dwayne Bravo, 38, and 42-year-old Chris Gayle.

Asian giants India will begin their campaign against arch rivals Pakistan on October 24 with Kohli looking to go out with a bang before stepping down as captain of the T20 side after the tournament.

Kohli will look to repeat India's triumph in the inaugural tournament in 2007 with the then skipper M.S. Dhoni joining the team as mentor.

Swashbuckling opener Rohit Sharma is widely tipped to be Kohli's successor and will be key to the team's chances along with yorker king Jasprit Bumrah. 

KL Rahul, meanwhile, hit the most sixes -- 30 -- in the Indian Premier League, which wraps up just before the T20 World Cup and which has allowed many stars the chance to get used to the UAE pitches.

Glenn Maxwell, for example, scored 513 runs including six half-centuries in the world's most popular cricket league, a performance that will boost Australia's hopes of a maiden T20 title.

Australia's white-ball captain Aaron Finch said he and David Warner will open the batting despite his left-handed partner twice being dropped by Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL.

- 'Six, seven contenders' -

Trans-Tasman neighbours New Zealand, led by Kane Williamson, will also be eyeing two successive world crowns after they won the inaugural Test championship, beating India in the final in June.

"We're in a tough pool, I genuinely think there are six, seven teams that could win this tournament and I guess that's good for world cricket as well," said Kiwi coach Gary Stead.

New Zealand are clubbed with India, Pakistan and Afghanistan in Group 1. England, Australia, South Africa and West Indies make up Group 2. 

South Africa and former champions Pakistan remain underdogs while Sri Lanka and Bangladesh need to fight it out with associate nations to join the heavyweights in the Super 12s.

A few weeks after the country's takeover by the Taliban, the dream winners would be outsiders Afghanistan, all of whose players are based abroad.

Their South African coach Lance Klusener recently boasted of his team's "best spin attack in the world" comprising Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Mohammad Nabi.

The tournament was originally meant to take place in Australia at the end of 2020 but was called off because of the pandemic. 

Then it was slated to happen in India and was finally moved to the Gulf, but with the Indian cricket board, the BCCI, still hosts.

The matches will be held across four venues -- the Dubai International Stadium, the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, the Sharjah Stadium, and the Oman Cricket Academy Ground -- with the final scheduled for Dubai on November 14.