It is often said that sport is much more than just a game, it's an emotion. There are times when a few sporting events can have such a huge impact on our lives that we wish they were not true. Indian cricket fans have witnessed few of those events in last few years which would have been great only if they were an April fool's day prank and nothing more. Let us turn back the clock and look at the top 5 events in that list:
1. India's World Cup exit in 2007
The series of events in the cricket World Cup 2007 was just unbelievable for the Indian fans to digest. A star-studded Indian side, going into the tournament as one of the title-contenders, got eliminated in the group stages after suffering shocking defeats at the hands of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. While Sachin Tendulkar won the World Cup in 2011, it would have been amazing if the 2007 WC exit was just a prank news and legendary players like Rahul Dravid and Sourav Ganguly had also lifted the coveted trophy. Unfortunately, that remained only a dream for all the fans as both the legendary players never played a World Cup again.
2. Sachin's farewell speech in 2013
India's legendary cricketer and one of the biggest sporting icons of all time, Sachin Tendulkar bid adieu to the sport on November 16, 2013. While he had already told that it would be his last international match, reality struck the fans when the Master Blaster delivered a heart-warming farewell speech. When Tendulkar said, "My life, between 22 yards for 24 years, it is hard to believe that that journey has come to an end," the entire country cried. The tears of sadness would have just turned into tears of joy had the 'God of cricket' ended the speech by saying it was just a prank and he will continue to play for the country.
3. MSD's run-out in CWC 2019
The 2019 World Cup semi-final was probably one of the most heart-breaking games in the history of Indian cricket. With 25 runs required off 10 deliveries, it looked like Dhoni would successfully pull off another special run-chase for India. However, the fans were left in shock as Martin Guptill struck a direct hit from the outfield when Dhoni tried to sneak in a couple of runs. The decision was referred to the third umpire as the entire country waited. As soon as the giant screen displayed 'out', millions of hopes shattered as India bowed out of the World Cup. It would have been a sensational moment for everyone had the big screen displayed 'April Fool's prank' and reversed the decision to 'not-out'.
4. 1929 hrs in 2020
After India's 2019 World Cup exit, it looked like it was not the end of MS Dhoni's career as he did not talk about his retirement. However, much to the disappointment of all the fans, Thala never returned to the cricket field again for Men in Blue. On 15th August 2020, former Indian skipper put out an emotional Instagram post stating, "from 1929 hrs consider me as Retired" and that's how the captain finished off his international career in style. MSD fans would have definitely forgiven him for the prank had he stated that from 1930 hrs, he will be back again for Men in Blue. However, it was not the case as India's most successful leader retired, leaving the fans in tears.
5. Adelaide 36 all-out in 2020
Indian fans witnessed one of the most horrific batting displays in the history of Test cricket on December 19, 2020. Coming to bat in a really strong position in Adelaide's day-night Test, Virat Kohli's side had no answers to the bowling of Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins. India's innings ended on 36/9 (with Shami retired hurt) which was their lowest-ever score in the history of 5-day cricket. While some of the fans watched the misery live early morning, a lot of people woke up to this unbelievable news. They would have just wished that someone was playing a prank with them as it was so hard to accept the fact that it really happened.