Just one staff in historical past has received the ICC Males’s Cricket World Cup 3 times in a row. On the anniversary of Australia’s third successive World Cup win, we caught up with Adam Gilchrist to reminisce on the three event victories.
THE 1999 WORLD CUP
By the point the 1999 World Cup rolled round, Australia had established themselves as cricket’s new dominant pressure in each Take a look at and one-day cricket, with their best risk to that crown being South Africa.
Three years earlier they’d been shocked by Sri Lanka within the ’96 ultimate at Gaddafi Stadium and this yr’s version provided them the possibility to get the job achieved.
The core of the staff that completed runners up in that version had been nonetheless round in ’99, with some new additions within the likes of Gilchrist and Darren Lehmann.
It was a staff filled with greats within the making however in Gilchrist’s reminiscence, not one which went into the occasion excessive on morale.
“We weren’t chockfull of confidence, there was a little bit of drama off the sector round choices,” he informed icc-cricket.com.
Simply three matches into the event their hopes had been hanging by a thread.
They’d began the marketing campaign in model, beating Scotland by six wickets, however issues bought ugly from there. Successive defeats to New Zealand and Pakistan left Australia needing to nearly win each match they performed from then on in the event that they had been going to put their palms on the trophy.
“After the third sport we knew we had form of hit all-time low,” Gilchrist recalled. “There was some fairly open and trustworthy dialogue, as is the way in which in loads of sporting groups if you’ve bottomed out.
“We most likely wanted a little bit of a shake-up. We weren’t precisely functioning to full capability at first of the event and the actual fact we had been on the sting of falling out of the event sparked us up, gave us a little bit of a actuality verify and kicked us into gear.”
The wicketkeeping nice pins a lot of the turnaround on the presence of Tom Moody within the squad. A grizzled veteran at that time, Moody had been there when Australia first received the lads’s World Cup in 1987 and was a staunch ally of Steve Waugh, who was captaining the aspect for the primary time at a worldwide occasion.
Moody was introduced into the XI from the fourth match onwards and instantly made his presence felt in a Participant of the Match efficiency in opposition to Bangladesh. Each Moody (56* off 29) and Gilchrist (63 off 39) smashed speedy half-centuries in opposition to the World Cup debutants to take Australia to victory inside 20 overs, kickstarting a marketing campaign that had threatened to hit the rocks.
“Tom got here into the staff in opposition to Bangladesh and that was the place we began to win, we didn’t lose one other sport after that. His off-field presence and his on-field expertise went a protracted method to stabilising our staff and permitting us to begin to construct momentum.”
Australia’s ultimate match of the group stage was a must-win conflict in opposition to a West Indies outfit that includes the likes of Brian Lara, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Curtly Ambrose, Courtney Walsh and Phil Simmons.
Heading into the match, Glenn McGrath wrote in his newspaper column that he would maintain Lara and snare 5 wickets. They had been huge phrases from a person who had been beneath his finest for a lot of the event however they proved prophetic.
Within the fifth over of the match he accounted for Sherwin Campbell and Jimmy Adams with consecutive deliveries and whereas Lara survived the hat-trick ball, he solely made it to the ninth over earlier than having his off-stump knocked over by the seamer.
McGrath went on to take 5/14 because the Australians received by six wickets with practically 10 overs to spare, securing their spot within the Tremendous Sixes.
Comfy wins over India and Zimbabwe adopted in Australia’s first two matches of the Tremendous Sixes however solely a victory over South Africa within the ultimate match of the stage would assure them a spot within the semi-finals.
Within the years for the reason that ’96 World Cup, South Africa and Australia had been duking it out to be thought-about ODI cricket’s finest staff with a handful of memorable clashes alongside the way in which.
A victory for the Proteas right here can be a decisive blow of their favour and finish Australia’s event. They had been within the driver’s seat to do exactly that after lowering the Australians to 48/3 in pursuit of 272. Enter Australia captain Waugh.
Within the infancy of his captaincy, Waugh stepped up with one of many most interesting ODI performances of his profession, scoring an unbeaten 120 off 110, taking advantage of a well-known life granted to him by a Herschelle Gibbs drop.
The five-wicket win with two balls to spare was sufficient to elevate Australia to second place within the Tremendous Sixes, locking them right into a semi-final conflict in opposition to the identical opponents they’d simply defeated.
As issues turned out, ending second within the Tremendous Sixes proved to be essential. In one of many best matches in ODI historical past, there can be no splitting Australia and South Africa in a semi-final which might see the World Cup’s first tie. Having completed increased on the Tremendous Sixes ladder, Waugh’s staff went by to the ultimate and South Africa went dwelling.
“I don’t suppose you’ll be able to bracket video games as the perfect ever however definitely some of the dramatic for all that was using on it,” Gilchrist mentioned of the heart-stopping semi-final. “A spot within the World Cup ultimate, the rivalry between us and South Africa by that time frame, what had occurred three days earlier than in that (Tremendous Sixes) sport.”
Held to 213 after being despatched out to bat, Australia had been firmly on the backfoot as South Africa loved a 48-run opening stand.
“It was simply such a tense affair. I keep in mind preventing my approach in my innings to get a little bit of a begin. All the pieces you needed to scrap for. Each run. Allan Donald bowled an attractive spell. They usually had been a extremely powerful, well-drilled staff.
“We actually needed to struggle and claw our method to 213. It at all times felt like we had been going to should do one thing fairly magical to make that aggressive and Shane Warne got here out and actually triggered that for us. He was the catalyst to open the door and instil somewhat little bit of perception in the remainder of us.
“It really was a high quality instance that when the hardest conditions come up, the best characters and people excessive profile, excessive stage, excessive expert people rise to the highest. Warnie did that fantastically.”
Throughout two overs, Warne, who had had a quiet event as much as that time, resuscitated Australia’s hopes. He took three wickets within the blink of an eye fixed earlier than Daryll Cullinan was run out to go away South Africa in hassle at 61/4.
An 84-run stand between Jaques Kallis and Jonty Rhodes swung the match again in South Africa’s favour however once more the Australians rallied and by the point the ninth wicket fell, South Africa nonetheless wanted 16 runs to win.
Weighing in South Africa’s favour was the presence of Lance Klusener, who would go on to be named Participant of the Event. Going into the ultimate over, the Proteas wanted 9 runs to win. Within the first two balls, Klusener took an Australian victory off the playing cards, hitting successive boundaries off Damien Fleming. The third was a dot, with Lehmann lacking the possibility to expire Donald who had backed up too far.
The fourth was a calamity for South Africa that is still one of many World Cup’s most iconic moments. Klusener drove Fleming to mid-off, calling Donald by for an ill-advised single. Donald held his floor at first earlier than realising Klusener had dedicated, and jetted for the striker’s finish, shedding his bat alongside the way in which.
The throw from mid-off missed the stumps on the non-striker’s finish just for Fleming to underarm the ball to Gilchrist who whipped off the bails with Donald nowhere close to making his floor. With that Australia had been by to the ultimate by the tightest attainable margin.
“Psychologically I feel we managed to simply create sufficient doubt there. It’s a bit like a tennis participant and the outdated saying – ‘simply make your opponent hit yet one more shot, if you happen to simply hold getting the ball again, that subsequent shot from the opponent could be the error that offers you a gap and a chance’.
“That’s all we may do, it was simply attempt to pressure South Africa (to play) yet one more ball, yet one more ball, yet one more ball. That strain in the end bought to them and an absence of communication opened the door for us.
“It was simply a unprecedented feeling. It was as thrilling and as nerve-wracking as you could possibly presumably think about.
“The jubilation and the euphoric feeling as soon as we bought by and realised we had been within the ultimate, that was sufficient to hold our wave of momentum by right down to London and out to Lord’s that day (of the ultimate).”
The ultimate itself was a a lot much less see-sawing match, with Australia cruising to an eight-wicket win over Pakistan, who slipped from 68/3 to 132 all out as Warne spun his method to figures of 4/33. A quickfire 54 off 36 from Gilchrist, who would make a behavior of huge scores in finals, made mild work of the chase from there.
THE 2003 WORLD CUP
Australia got down to turn out to be the second staff to ever win consecutive males’s Cricket World Cups within the 2003 version, using a wave of six straight ODI wins into the event.
In the event that they had been in a two-way race for cricketing supremacy with South Africa in 1999, in 2003 they had been firmly established because the world’s finest staff.
However earlier than a ball had been bowled, their hopes took successful as Warne, one of many heroes of the ’99 World Cup, was hit with a one-year ban by the Australian Cricket Board. The bona fide nice of the sport had examined optimistic for a banned diuretic.
The timing couldn’t have been any worse both, with the information reaching Australia the day earlier than their first sport of the event.
“That was one thing we needed to overcome,” Gilchrist mentioned. “I assumed our management group, primarily within the type of (coach) John Buchanan and (captain) Ricky Ponting, the 2 of them they actually dealt with that state of affairs effectively.
“They allowed us as a staff to handle it, discuss it, cope with it in order that the subsequent morning when the remainder of the world had been speaking about that state of affairs with Warnie, we had been there able to deal with our first sport.”
That first match proved a troublesome one for Australia. Taking up one of many format’s best ever assaults in Pakistan’s tempo trio of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar, the Australians had been limping at 86/4 inside the primary 16 overs.
A superb maiden century from Andrew Symonds righted the course from there and Australia went on to win the match by 82 runs. They didn’t look again from that second on, occurring to win the event with out shedding a single sport.
“Once more we constructed and constructed and constructed by the event to play an virtually excellent sport within the ultimate,” Gilchrist mentioned. “Several types of tournaments, totally different stresses and strains and drama however definitely no much less satisfying to go on and win it.”
And whereas Australia grew into that marketing campaign simply as they’d in ’99, this time it was very a lot by design.
“In ’99 we bought by by the pores and skin of our tooth, didn’t we? A tied semi-final. We had the sport previous to that in opposition to South Africa the place the well-known Herschelle Gibbs half-caught-half-dropped catch and Stephen will get an impressive hundred. So we had been proper on the sting, on the cliff, and possibly the actual fact we bought to the ultimate simply allowed us all to chill out then and exit and produce our greatest cricket.”
By 2003, Mike Younger had joined the Australian staff’s help employees as their fielding coach. Born and raised in America with a background in baseball, Younger introduced with him an enormous image view on success.
“Though in ’03 and ’07 we didn’t lose any video games, we most likely weren’t hanging on that tightly to the actual fact we had been undefeated.
“That wasn’t the precedence. The precedence was simply to get to the subsequent spherical. It was extra about constructing momentum, sharing the expertise in order that if ‘plan A’ didn’t work by the use of choice or execution, we may alter shortly.
“He (Younger) spoke about this time period ‘event play’. About getting right into a event, not making an attempt to essentially win each sport, if that occurs that may be a by-product, however get the method proper and construct. Simply construct.
“You don’t should play your excellent sport within the first sport, however you’ve bought to discover a method to get to the subsequent stage and begin to construct momentum.
“Get to the subsequent stage, then get to the semis, get to the ultimate and that offers you nothing apart from the chance to play your excellent sport within the final sport of the event. That was his mindset. That gave us a pleasant focus.
“Though we had been profitable all of the video games, even when we had a shaky sport or particular person gamers had been lacking out, it nonetheless allowed you to deal with the larger image. It was a pleasant reminder that we’re right here for the massive image, not simply every particular person outcome.”
And when the ultimate got here round Australia’s excellent sport got here with it.
Towards a assured Indian outfit, Ponting’s staff ran away 125-run victors – that is still the largest profitable margin in a World Cup ultimate ever. Gilchrist and Damien Martyn, the latter taking part in with a damaged finger, scored half-centuries and Ponting produced one of many World Cup’s best ever knocks, scoring an unbeaten 140 off 121.
Australia’s complete of 359/2 was at all times more likely to be too huge a goal to chase down and that proved to be the case regardless of the perfect efforts of Virender Sehwag, who scored 82 off 81.
It’s a match that might have adopted a special path.
The Australian approach has at all times been to bat first in a event ultimate if given the possibility, however that morning in Johannesburg there was loads of cloud cowl and the pitch seemed prefer it was going to have one thing in it for the seamers. Real thought was given to opting to area first.
Thankfully for the Australians, the coin landed in Sourav Ganguly’s favour and he took the choice out of their palms, electing to present his bowlers first use.
“It was humorous as Haydos (Matthew Hayden) and I had been strolling down out to bat, it was virtually as we hit the sector it felt just like the clouds simply opened up a bit,” Gilchrist mentioned. “Some sunshine got here by and fairly shortly the clouds disappeared and it was an attractive sunny interval whereas we batted in order that was a pleasant signal.
“He (Hayden) bought us off to an incredible begin after which I had somewhat time frame batting with Ricky however then simply sat again and loved the present from Ricky and Damien Martyn, coming again in with a damaged finger. It was a exceptional partnership.”
With a 350+ complete on the board, solely two issues stood in the way in which of Australia and World Cup glory: Sachin Tendulkar and the climate.
Tendulkar had been the event’s standout participant by the size of the straight, scoring 673 runs at 61.18 – 200 greater than the subsequent highest run-scorer.
He seemed on track to supply one other huge efficiency within the ultimate, pulling the fourth ball of the innings from McGrath for 4. On the very subsequent supply, he fell caught and bowled for 4.
“Sachin is Sachin. By that stage he was setting each document in world cricket.
“Glenn McGrath was at all times somebody who needed to tackle the accountability, notably with the marginally inexperienced bowling line-up he had round him. Brett Lee was there however no Warnie clearly.
“For Glenn to get Sachin fairly cheapy within the ultimate, that felt like an enormous step ahead in the direction of the trophy.”
With Tendulkar out, the subsequent goal for Australia was getting the job achieved earlier than rain may wash out the match and pressure them right into a replay.
“Ricky’s good however we weren’t positive whether or not Ricky may try this once more back-to-back. Thankfully, we didn’t have to seek out that out.”
Within the 40th over, McGrath had Zaheer Khan caught at mid-on. With that, he claimed his second World Cup winners’ medal.
THE 2007 WORLD CUP
Australia had matched the West Indies by changing into simply the second males’s staff to win consecutive World Cup tournaments in 2003. In 2007 they eclipsed them with a 3rd straight victory in cricket’s greatest event.
It’s an accomplishment Gilchrist ranks within the high three of a glittered profession, alongside the 2 16-Take a look at profitable streaks Australia loved within the Nineteen Nineties and 2000s.
The 2007 event belonged to 2 gamers specifically. Hayden topped the run-scoring with 659 at 73.22, whereas McGrath took a record-breaking 26 wickets at 13.73.
The Australians cruised by the group stage, registering 200+ run victories over Scotland and the Netherlands earlier than beating South Africa by 83 runs. And issues didn’t get any tougher for them within the Tremendous Eights stage, through which their sternest take a look at was a seven-wicket win over England with 16 balls to spare.
Pushed all the way in which within the semi-finals of the ‘99 World Cup by South Africa, this time Australia handled them with ease, profitable by seven wickets.
Australia had been dominant in 2003. They had been on one other stage in 2007 because the likes of Gilchrist, McGrath and Hayden completed their World Cup careers in model.
Within the ultimate, they met a star-studded Sri Lanka staff that includes Sanath Jayasuriya, Muttiah Muralitharan, Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene. They blew them away in the identical approach they’d all prior opponents, profitable a rain-shortened match by 53 runs.
Having scored half-centuries in every of the earlier finals, Gilchrist took centre stage in his third, notching the primary World Cup century of his profession in his final ever sport on the event.
With Australia’s innings decreased to 38 overs by the rain, he belted 149 off 104, hitting 13 fours and eight sixes in an all-out assault. When he raised his ton he saluted the dressing room earlier than pointing to a lump in his left glove.
The southpaw had performed with a squash ball stuffed into his backside glove for the whole thing of the marketing campaign on the recommendation of his batting coach in Perth. It was a coaching method he had used for the previous decade to make sure he didn’t grip the bat too tightly along with his backside hand, encouraging him to play within the V.
“I bought to the ultimate and I had my doubts over whether or not I ought to use it or not, that possibly I ought to simply return to my pure approach. However I trusted my teaching recommendation and I feel in these situations it labored very well. It helped me hit straighter. Even when it wasn’t a mechanical factor in my grip, mentally it helped me take into consideration that.
“That was only a actually pleasing outcome – I knew then that it was going to be my final World Cup match.
“I had been run out for 99 in a World Cup however I had by no means gotten to the magical three figures in a World Cup event, so I used to be thrilled to tick that one-off.
“However extra so in a rain-shortened sport, in opposition to a harmful Sri Lankan staff that had firepower with the bat, it was actually necessary we put an enormous complete on the board.”
To suppose it was a knock that began with fielding coach Younger having to shake him awake for the beginning of Australia’s innings.
“It most likely suited me. We received the toss however then the rain got here so we had a good delay between figuring out we had been batting and going out to bat.
“I truly went out the again within the fitness center space of the changeroom and simply put my head right down to relaxation and really fell asleep and was woken by Mike Younger, to say prepare, the umpires are going on the market.
“The very fact I used to be so relaxed and unable to actually get tensed most likely helped me.”
For Gilchrist, McGrath and Ponting it was a 3rd successive World Cup win in a row – a run McGrath and Ponting featured in each match of, and Gilchrist all however one.
For his or her efforts within the Caribbean, every member of Australia’s squad was offered with gold rings on their return dwelling.
For Gilchrist, McGrath and Ponting it was the third they’d every picked up.
“We are able to stroll round a bit like Liberace and get our bling out every so often,” Gilchrist joked.
It’s a decade of unrivalled success he believes is testomony to the energy and adaptableness of the groups he was part of.
“It’s good to see totally different nations marrying up in opposition to one another and so they’re all in the identical situations, so who’s adapting to the situations finest and who is ready to handle change on the run inside a event.
“They’re terrific tournaments in that they do take a look at the resolve of all of the squads and the way versatile you could be, how effectively ready, have you ever bought your choices proper as a squad for the situations after which every sport day have you ever bought your choices proper.
“It’s a true take a look at and that’s why the three in a row will at all times be in my eyes one of many nice achievements of that cricketing group we performed collectively in. To do this and persistently do it over the span of eight years is a high quality achievement and one which is stuffed with nice reminiscences.”
Throughout the three males’s World Cups since Australia’s win in 2007, there have been three totally different winners.
Information are there to be damaged, but it surely might be a while earlier than anybody comes near matching that hat-trick of trophies.