India's World Cup win after a gap of 28 years was undoubtedly the highest point in cricket in the year 2011. But that was not the end of all. There were many such moments that make the game of cricket one of the most enchanting sports. Here is a compilation of top 10 cricket moments of the year 2011.
Lap of honour for Sachin: This was one achievement Sachin Tendulkar yearned for the most in his career and it eluded him for 21 years. And when it happened, his teammates gathered to pay their ultimate tribute to the maestro. Youngsters led by Virat Kohli and Yusuf Pathan carried him around the stadium on their shoulders. Kohli said: "Tendulkar has carried the burden of the nation for 21 years. It was time we carried him." It indeed was a fitting gesture.
India-Pakistan semi-final match: An India-Pakistan match always draws maximum crowd. The madness increased manifold since it was a World Cup match and that too for a berth in the final. And as usual it had diplomatic importance as well. But as soon as the match began, everything took a back seat and cricket ruled the Mohali Stadium. And who better than Sachin Tendulkar to script the victory for India? The Master Blaster scored 85 runs and was rightly named Man of the Match. With a 29-run win, India maintained their 100 per cent winning record against their arch-rivals in the World Cup.
Viru slams 219: India's Virender Sehwag blasted past records as he tormented West Indies like never before. He slapped boundaries and sixes galore in Indore to race past Sachin Tendulkar's record and become the highest scorer in ODIs
Chennai Super Kings win back-to-back IPL titles: After the pinnacle called the World Cup, nobody seemed to be interested in the following Indian Premier League. But the man, who led India to the World Cup win, took his job as the skipper of the Chennai Super Kings equally seriously. MS Dhoni, who had led steered his Chennai team to the title in 2010, made sure they retained it like true champions. Chennai Super Kings outplayed Mumbai Indians in the final to lift the trophy.
Dravid completes 13,000 Test runs: If it wasn't for Sachin Tendulkar as his contemporary, Rahul Dravid could have easily qualified as the best batsman India has ever produced. During the Test series against the West Indies, Dravid became only the second cricketer in the world to complete over 13000 runs in Test cricket. In the third Test in Mumbai, Dravid drove West Indies skipper Darren Sammy for a boundary to reach to the milestone in the 29th over of the Indian innings. He has 36 hundreds and 62 half-centuries to his name.
England's Ashes win in Australia after 24 years: The year gone by was definitely a year of English dominance in Test cricket. And it was more profoundly announced when they claimed their first Ashes series in Australia after 24 years, with their third innings victory over the home team in the final Sydney Test. England clinched the series 3-1, leaving the Aussies red faced as this was the only Ashes series where a team won three Tests by an innings margin.
Zimbabwe make a Test return after a six-year exile: Problems have always marred Zimbabwe and the cricket played in the nation. However, even with all their unresolved issues, they have made a successful return to Test cricket after a 6-year ban. Zimbabwe marked their return from the exile by racking up an impressive 264 for two against Bangladesh on the first day of a one-off Test at the Harare Sports Club and went on to win the match on Day 5 by 130 runs.
South Africa bowl out Australia for 47: Whenever these two teams clash, some records are shattered and many are made! And this time the South African pace trio of Vernon Philander, Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn fired in unison to bowl out the Aussies for a paltry 47 runs on Day 2 of the first Test match in Cape Town. And this fury followed after the hosts were shot out for 96 runs in their first innings. South Africa went on to win the match by 8 wickets. Such great contests certainly are like shot in the arm for Test cricket.
Ireland defeat England in World Cup match despite chasing 328: If you are a cricket fan, you know it is not easy to beat the England team, but if you are an Ireland fan, you will disagree. And there is a reason for it. During the World Cup, batting first England scored 328 runs. Till then it was a typical a minnow vs giant story. But come Ireland's batting and things go haywire for England. Kevin O'Brien turned England's fortune on its head with his blitzing century. He scored 113 of 63 balls, which is also the fastest century in the World Cup history, to beat their neighbours.
India avenge England whitewash: No Indian fan would want to recollect India's tour to England in 2011. A string of injuries to most of the players in the team, uninspiring performance and stupendous show from the hosts, all contributed to the whitewash. Nothing went right for the World Champions and they were outplayed in all formats of the game by the England team. Soon after, India played hosts to Alastair Cook and Co for a five-match ODI series. And MS Dhoni made sure that India at least settled the ODI scores with England who are beaten 5-0.
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