HomeICC Cricket World CupPlayers Who Deserved Winning The WC: IND

Players Who Deserved Winning The WC: IND

Indian Players Who Deserved Winning The World Cup

It is hard to believe that India had won 1 out of their 8 games across the first two editions of the World Cup. They went on to stun the world when they beat reigning champions West Indies to win the tournament in 1983. India from then on slowly moved to becoming the cricketing powerhouse it currently is. The 1987 World Cup was the first instance where the tournament was played in the subcontinent. India made it to the semifinals in that edition. Let us look at details on Indian Players Who Deserved Winning The World Cup.

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The forgettable 90s:

India had one of their most disappointing tournaments in the 1992 World Cup. They failed to make it to the semis in the 9-team World Cup. India lost to Sri Lanka in the semis in the 1996 World Cup at home leaving fans furious. Their showing was sub-par in the 1999 World Cup too where they couldn’t move beyond the Super Six stage. India was not even in the top 5 ODI teams of that era.

The turn in tides:

Australia outplayed India in the 2003 World Cup final destroying hopes of an encore after 20 years. India shockingly lost to Bangladesh and later to Sri Lanka to bow out from the tournament in the group stage itself. But a determined Indian team brought back the cup in 2011. They lost in the semis of 2015 and 2019 after being the top team in the league stage. India’s run in World Cups has been consistent but not all their legends have won the World Cups.

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We look at a few such players:

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#3 Anil Kumble 

He is widely regarded as India’s greatest match-winner. Anil Kumble didn’t get the credit he deserved during his playing days. He singlehandedly kept India in the game with the ball similar to what Sachin Tendulkar did with the bat. Kumble made his World Cup debut in 1996.

He was the leading wicket-taker in the tournament with 15 scalps to his name. Kumble went on to play 3 more editions of the tournament but his impact was minimal. For a player who served the nation with such distinction, Kumble truly deserved a World Cup winner’s medal.

#2 Sourav Ganguly

He was one of India’s few bright spots in the 1999 World Cup. Sourav Ganguly’s 183 against Sri Lanka at Taunton remains an Indian record in the tournament. He delivered an all-round performance in the game against England to ensure India a place in the Super Six. But it was the 2003 World Cup where Sourav Ganguly’s era came to the fore. The team had a dream run leading to the finals winning 9 games on the trot. India though fell short against a rampaging Australian side in the finals. 

Ganguly who was stripped of captaincy in mid-2005 made a comeback to the side before the 2007 World Cup. He made a scratchy fifty against Bangladesh in the opening game. But India lost the match and eventually exited at the group stage. Ganguly’s captaincy brought a generational shift in Indian cricket. But sadly he too was devoid of a World Cup trophy.

#1 Rahul Dravid

He was dropped from the side in the 1997-98 season because of his inability to get going in ODIs. Rahul Dravid made a telling comeback in the 1999 World Cup wherein he was the leading run-getter in the tournament (461 runs). For all his record-breaking run, Dravid did not win a single POTM in the 1999 World Cup. He agreed to keep wickets in the 2003 World Cup to lend the side more balance. 

Dravid played a crucial hand in India’s wins over England, Pakistan, and Kenya. He led the side in 2007 which remains one of the most dark chapters in Indian cricket. Dravid has a real chance at glory in the 2023 World Cup wherein he is the coach of the Indian team. It will be a fitting tribute to one of Indian cricket’s biggest unsung heroes.

Vignesh Rajagopal
Vignesh Rajagopalhttps://stumpsandbails.com/
I am a passionate cricket lover, who likes to express his views on the beautiful game and share insights and analysis about the finer aspects of the sport.

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