World Cup’s Firsts, Facts And Trivia

India is eagerly preparing for the 13th edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup in 2023. This marks a historic occasion as it’s the first time that India will be the sole host of the ODI World Cup, having previously shared hosting duties with Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan in various editions.

Cricket enjoys a hallowed status in India, often considered nothing less than a religion, and the nation’s passionate cricketing fans are eagerly anticipating this grand spectacle set to commence on October 5. The ICC, the international governing body of cricket, created quite a buzz by launching the World Cup trophy to an astonishing height of 1,20,000 feet in the sky before it gracefully touched down at the Narendra Modi Cricket Stadium in Ahmedabad. This trophy unveiling alone has set the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 apart, and there are numerous other firsts to look forward to in this upcoming event. Speaking of firsts let’s look at some of the firsts, facts and trivia from the previous edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup

1975 World Cup – Champions: West Indies

The inaugural edition of the cricket World Cup in 1975, initially known as the Prudential Cup, witnessed West Indies emerging as the champions. This tournament played a pivotal role in catapulting the popularity of the One Day International (ODI) format worldwide. Notably, Dennis Amiss of England achieved the distinction of becoming the first centurion in World Cup history.

1979 World Cup – Champions: West Indies

The 1979 World Cup marked a historic moment as it welcomed Canada, a non-Test-playing nation, to its ranks. West Indies continued their dominance, securing their second consecutive title. This achievement made Clive Lloyd the first-ever captain to successfully defend the World Cup trophy.

1983 World Cup – Champions: India

India emerged as the champions of the 1983 World Cup, a tournament that left an indelible mark on cricketing history. Despite West Indies’ pursuit of a third consecutive title, Kapil Dev’s India triumphed in the finals, earning their maiden championship. Kapil Dev’s extraordinary innings of an unbeaten 175 against Zimbabwe stands as one of the highest individual scores by a captain in a World Cup match and played a pivotal role in the tournament’s outcome.

1987 World Cup – Champions: Australia

The 1987 World Cup, the first hosted outside England, was jointly organized by India and Pakistan. This edition of the World Cup saw a reduction in the number of overs per innings from 60 to 50. Chetan Sharma from India made history by becoming the first bowler ever to claim a hat-trick in a World Cup match, achieving this feat against New Zealand with three consecutive clean bowled deliveries. Australia emerged as new champions by defeating England in the finals.

1992 World Cup – Champions: Pakistan

1992 World Cup – The 1992 World Cup introduced vibrant colors to cricketing attire and featured white cricket balls, drawing in more fans to the sport. It was also the inaugural edition to adopt a round-robin format, where the top four teams advanced to the semifinals, a format retained in subsequent World Cups, including the 2019 edition and the upcoming 2023 tournament. Notably, South Africa made its first-ever appearance in a World Cup during this edition. Pakistan claimed the championship title.

1996 World Cup – Champions: Sri Lanka

1996 World Cup – The 1996 World Cup was closely associated with Sri Lanka, as they co-hosted the event with India and Pakistan. Due to security concerns, Australia and the West Indies declined to travel to Sri Lanka, leading to Sri Lanka being awarded default victories in both matches. Sri Lanka also received a default win in their semi-final against India due to crowd disturbances. They eventually emerged victorious in the finals, becoming the first nation to win the World Cup as hosts. Mark Waugh became the first player to score three centuries in a single edition of the World Cup.

1999 World Cup – Champions: Australia

1999 World Cup – The 1999 World Cup marked the return of cricket to its home, England, and was the first time the tournament was officially named the “ICC Cricket World Cup.” Bangladesh secured their first-ever ODI win by defeating a test-playing nation, Pakistan, in a league match. This tournament signaled the beginning of Australia’s dominant reign, as they successfully defended their title, a feat they would repeat in the 2003 and 2007 editions.

2003 Cricket World Cup – Champions: Australia

The grand spectacle of cricket arrived on the African continent as South Africa, Kenya, and Zimbabwe jointly assumed the role of hosts for the 2003 World Cup. This edition boasted participation from 14 nations, making it the largest World Cup in terms of the number of teams at the time. Kenya showcased their prowess, making it to the semifinals before falling to India. Australia, on the other hand, delivered a stunning performance, winning the tournament without losing a single match. Ricky Ponting’s scintillating 140 runs in the finals against India remains the highest score by a captain in a World Cup final.

2007 Cricket World Cup – Champions: Australia

The Caribbean Nation played host to the 2007 World Cup, an event rife with memorable moments. Ireland made their World Cup debut and created shockwaves by defeating both Pakistan and Zimbabwe. Bangladesh also caused a major upset by defeating India. In another thrilling event, Herschelle Gibbs smashed six sixes in an over off Netherlands leg-spinner Daan van Bunge. India’s score of 413 for five was the first instance of a team surpassing 400 runs in a World Cup innings.

2011 Cricket World Cup – Champions: India

The tenth edition of the tournament returned to the Indian subcontinent, with India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka jointly hosting the event. The Decision Review System (DRS) was introduced for the first time. The final between India and Sri Lanka marked the first instance of two Asian teams competing in the summit clash. Lasith Malinga achieved a remarkable feat by taking two World Cup hat-tricks, one of which came against Kenya.

2015 Cricket World Cup – Champions: Australia

The cricketing world descended upon Australia and New Zealand for the 2015 World Cup. Afghanistan secured their first-ever World Cup victory when they defeated Scotland by one wicket. The semi-final between New Zealand and South Africa provided both teams a historic opportunity to reach the final for the first time. In a rain-affected, nail-biting contest, New Zealand emerged victorious, with Grant Elliott sealing the win with a six against Dale Steyn. This shot was so significant that Seat 12, Row T, Section 318 has been immortalized as the Grant Elliott Seat, as per the plaque beneath it, which reads, “Here Lies the Resting Place of Grant Elliott’s Mighty Six That Propelled the Blackcaps into the WC Final.”

2019 Cricket World Cup – Champions: England

The 12th edition of the World Cup proved to be one of the most competitive tournaments in history. Hosts and eventual champions England were among the favorites, particularly after adopting an aggressive style of play following their disappointing performance in the 2015 World Cup. England, as the birthplace of the sport, secured their first-ever World Cup victory in a closely contested final. The match between England and New Zealand ended in a tie, leading to a super-over, which also resulted in a tie, with England ultimately winning on the boundary count. This victory continued the trend of host nations winning the World Cup, a trend that began with India in the 2011 World Cup.

2023 Cricket World Cup – Champions: ?

The upcoming edition promises to raise the level of competitiveness and elevate cricket to new heights. Unfortunately, the two-time World Cup champions, West Indies, will not participate in the event, having failed to qualify for the first time ever. Nevertheless, the tournament is set to be one of the biggest sporting events of the year, scheduled to begin on October 5, 2023.

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