The second wave of COVID-19 in India has put everything on hold in the country. The Indian Premier League did bring some smiles back on the faces of cricket lovers during these unprecedented times but even the tournament had to be cancelled because of the deadly virus. While all the other sports like Football, Basketball, Formula One etc. have begun in full swing, it’s been a slightly different case with cricket. However, things are getting back to normalcy in the sport with Bangladesh and Sri Lanka locking horns for the three-match ODI series, with the first match taking place on Sunday.
Read More: Bangladesh v Sri Lanka 1st ODI LIVE BLOG
While it’s a big relief for the fans to finally see some live cricket action, the Indian cricket lovers will still have to wait for one more month. While India’s women side will return to action on June 16 in a one-off Test against England, the men’s side will be back on June 18 in the WTC Final against New Zealand. With so much time still left and with the country in lockdown, let us relive some of the best last-over wins for the Indian cricket team by watching the final moments of those special matches.
1. Joginder Sharma’s historic over in 2007 T20 World Cup Final
It was the finals of the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in 2007. Team India were up against Pakistan and the match had gone down the wire. Misbah-ul-Haq was playing a knock of his life and Pakistan needed 13 runs off the last 6 deliveries with only one wicket in hand. With an over of experienced Harbhajan Singh left, MS Dhoni handed the ball to Joginder Sharma for the final over, much to everyone’s surprise. The pacer looked nervous and started the final over with a wide but followed it up with a dot delivery. However, the match changed completely when Misbah smashed a huge six off a full toss on the third delivery. With only 6 runs required, the Pakistan captain attempted an audacious scoop but made a mess of it as the ball went straight into the hands of Sreesanth, handing India a historic title in Johannesburg.
2. Dinesh Karthik’s heroics against Bangladesh in Nidahas Trophy
The 2018 Nidahas Trophy final was one of the most dramatic matches for Indian cricket in recent times. After Dinesh Karthik had smashed Rubel Hussain for 22 overs in the penultimate over, the Men in Blue needed 12 runs off the final over. After Soumya Sarkar started with a wide, he followed it up with a 0, 1 and 1 off the next three deliveries, putting Bangladesh in the driving seat. Vijay Shankar somehow managed to score a boundary off the fourth ball before losing his wicket in an attempt to go big. Fortunately for India, the batsmen had crossed and Dinesh Karthik was at the crease for the final delivery with his side needing 5 runs. Sarkar bowled a wide full-length ball which DK connected brilliantly as the ball sailed over the covers region for a six as the crowd erupted in joy.
3. Harmanpreet Kaur wins the match for her side on the last ball
Team India were chasing a target of 245 against South Africa for the highly-important 2016/17 ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier title. With 9 runs required off the last over, all hopes were on stand-in skipper Harmanpreet Kaur. Letsoalo came in to bowl the deciding over and the right-handed batter smashed the ball straight at the hands of the fielder and had to sacrifice the wicket of partner Poonam Yadav in a bid to retain the strike. The SA pacer then bowled three consecutive dot deliveries, bringing down the equation to 8 runs required off the last 2 balls. With hopes of an Indian win diminishing, Kaur hit a huge six and somehow sneaked in two runs off the last ball to secure a thrilling win for the Women in Blue.
4. MS Dhoni – The finisher at his absolute best against Sri Lanka
It was the finals of Celkon Mobile Cup 2013 and the match was very evenly poised with India needing 15 runs off the last over with only 1 wicket remaining. The responsibility was on the shoulders of captain cool – MS Dhoni. Shaminda Eranga bowled a dot delivery to start off the over putting the pressure back on the Indian skipper. However, it was time for MSD to unleash his finishing prowess once again as he smashed a six and a boundary off the next two deliveries before hitting another maximum to seal a famous win for his side. While it was quite dramatic with how things panned out in the end, the fans were certainly not surprised because Mahi had pulled off quite a few wins like this in past.
5. India win 2002 Natwest Series finale in most dramatic style
This was one of the Men in Blue’s most famous wins in their history, which actually started the golden era of Indian cricket. Chasing a huge target of 326 against home-side England at Lord’s, a brilliant partnership between Yuvraj Singh and Mohammad Kaif had brought them back in the game. With 2 runs needed off the last over with 2 wickets in hand, it was India’s match but the only issue was that Zaheer Khan was on strike. After two dot deliveries, the pressure was increasing. On the third ball, Khan hit a shot straight at the fielder but Mohammad Kaif sprinted for a quick run. The England fielder missed the stumps and the resulting overthrow handed India a historic win which was followed by Sourav Ganguly’s famous celebration.