Right now, cricket is first and foremost on everyone’s mind. With IPL followed by the T-20 World Cup in Australia later this year, cricket fans would simply be spoilt for choice. But are the enthusiasts aware of certain surreal tales surrounding cricket that are equally interesting and flabbergasting as the matches themselves? So, today we will initiate you into some hard to believe tales that are true yet very tough to digest.
92 off 4 balls & The Victory Came In Less Than An Over
Believe it or not, this might sound outlandish at the outset but it really transpired. It took place in Bangladesh during a league game. In the face-off between Lalmatia Club and Axiom Cricketers, the former intentionally gave away 94 runs in 4 balls as a mark of protest against poor umpiring. As per ESPNCricinfo, after Lalmatia Club were skittled out for 88 in 14 overs, their bowler Sujon Mahmud conceded 92 off 4 legitimate deliveries. Mahmud sent down 65 wides and 15 no-balls in the process and the over comprised of 20 balls.
Such bizarre bowling ensured that the chasing team Axioms romped home in less than an over. Later on, the club secretary clarified that Lalmatias were peeved with the standard of umpiring in the Dhaka Second Division League and the fact that the captain of the club was not permitted to see the coin after it fell on the ground during the toss.
23 Wickets Tumble On A Single Day
If you feel that Test cricket is boring then you only need to look back at this 2011 match between Aussies and Proteas. In the first Test at Cape Town Aussies could score only 55 on day one as rains washed off the rest of the day’s proceedings. On the second day, the Oz were dismissed for 284 and then Proteas looking for some quick runs to minimize the deficit were bundled out for 96.
However, buoyant Australia resuming their second innings on the same day itself got a rude shock when South African bowlers in a spirited fightback annihilated them for a paltry 47. Then the Proteas chased down the target of 236 on the same day itself, thanks to the tons by Graeme Smith (101) and Hashim Amla (110). All the action unfolded on the second day of the game itself.
Squash Ball On Gilchrist’s Left Glove
A squash ball proved to be the game-changer in the final of a world cup once. In the 2007 World Cup in West Indies, Australia and Sri Lanka were the two finalists. Back then, the Kangaroos were in a league of their own as they were chasing their 3rd consecutive WC title. Batting first, Australia posted a daunting 281, courtesy of an explosive 149 by Adam Gilchrist.
The outstanding innings by the Oz’s wicketkeeper-batsman contained 13 boundaries and 8 hits over the fence. Resultantly, Australia got their third successive coveted trophy as Sri Lankans got crushed under the weight of the runs in the end. However, when Gilchrist came to receive his Man of the Match award he revealed that he had placed a squash bowl inside his left batting glove to enhance the power of his bottom hand and the elastic ball aided him substantially in wreaking havoc on the unfortunate Lankans.
Agarkar Lords Over The Lord’s
Unarguably, the GOAT in cricket, Sachin Tendulkar had made and smashed several records in his illustrious career but has never scored a ton at the Mecca of cricket ie Lord’s. This is something that would be haunting Sachin even now. But you would find it hard to believe that of all the cricketers Ajit Agarkar, at best a bowler, scored a century at the prestigious venue of cricket. Agarkar had been a decent enough bowler for India and his exploits at Adelaide in 2003 helped India win a Test in the Kangaroo’s den after a long time.
However, as a batsman, he was very inconsistent and had an ignominious record in Australia, where he got four Golden Ducks on the trot in a Test series at the start of the millennium. But, in the 2002 Test at Lord’s against England, when India were chasing an unattainable target of 568, Agarkar scored an unbeaten 109 and was also involved in a 6th wicket stand with VVS Laxman (74) for 126 runs. India might have lost the match by a huge margin, but Agarkar got his name etched at the “home of cricket”.