Lions are whimsical

ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 – the week’s wrap-up

But THIS is why Lanka is Lanka.
THIS is why 21 million hearts hold on.
THIS is why we believe.
THIS is how the lions roar.
– A tweet by an elated fan

This is a look-back as to how the third week of the 12th edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup unfolded in England and Wales from Saturday, 15 June to Friday, 21 June 2019. One special victory will throw into history all the bad work done before that. The Leeds’ win over world No. 1 England on Friday, 21 June thus turned tables on the bitter cricketing discourse hovered around the island in these troubled times. Now, SL might delay their packing and have one eye on doing their next three matches (vs. SA on Friday, 28 June; vs. WI on Monday, 1 July; and vs. India on Saturday, 6 July) well and enter last four.
The tournament which began on 30 May is to continue for six long weeks plus another three days before its 14 July finale, which is to be staged at the Mecca of cricket – Lord’s, London. On 6 July, the first-round matches will be over, picking the top four teams.

Points table so far

Australia, NZ, England, and India deservedly got into the top four slots by Friday, hoping to enter the semi-finals. SL, Bangladesh, and the WI followed, respectively. SA, Pakistan, and Afghanistan held the last three spots.

Over-300 totals

The trend of big first-innings totals – 11 times over 300 – was something very lively in this edition of the World Cup. Here is the highest five totals so far:

1. England 397/6 vs. Afghanistan in Match 24
2. England 386/6 vs. Bangladesh in Match 12
3. Australia 381/5 vs. Bangladesh in Match 26
4. India 352/5 vs. Australia (316) in Match 14
5. Pakistan 348/8 vs. England (334/9) in Match 6

(The highest team total in a World Cup match ever is 417/6 by Australia who played against Afghanistan in 2015. There are three entries already among the highest15 all-time team totals ever in a World Cup.)

Leading batsman so far

* Australia’s David Warner, scoring 166 against Bangladesh, topped the batsmen’s list of the tournament with 447 runs (ave. 89.40), scoring two centuries and two fifties.
* His opening partner Aaron Finch is in the third place with 396 runs (66.00), with three fifties and a century.
* Joining Warner with two tons in the tournament so far are Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan (425 runs at 106.25 with two fifties), England’s Joe Root (367 at 91.75 with two fifties), and India’s Rohit Sharma (319 at 159.50 with a fifty), who presently hold the second, fourth, and fifth spots in the list, respectively.

Leading bowlers so far

After Friday’s SL vs. Eng. match:

1. Jofra Archer (Eng.) – 15 wkts. at 17.93
2. Mitchell Starc (Aus.) – 15 wkts. at 20.26
3. Mohammad Amir (Pak.) – 13 wkts. at 13.07
4. Mark Wood (Eng.) – 12 wkts. at 16.91
5. Lockie Ferguson (NZ) – 11wkts. at 14.36
9. Lasith Malinga (SL) – eight wkts. at 23.62


Saturday, 15 June 2019 – Match 20:
Australia vs. SL at The Oval, London

As it was expected, the only difference was Dimuth’s brilliant 97 and the opening stand of …between him and Kusal Perera. The long-running SL middle-order and the tail were disastrous. It was way too much for the hapless islanders in the end.

Toss: SL


Australia 334/7 in 50 overs (Aaron Finch 153 in 132 balls – 4×15, 6×5; Steven Smith 73 off 59, Glenn Maxwell 46 n.o. in 25; Dhananjaya De Silva 2/40, Isuru Udana 2/57)
SL 247 all out in 45.5 overs (Dimuth Karunaratne 97, Kusal Perera 52 in 36, Kusal Mendis 30; Mitchell Starc 4/55, Kane Richardson 3/47, Pat Cummins 2/38)

Result: Australia won by 87 runs
Man of the Match: Aaron Finch of Australia


Saturday, 15 June 2019 – Match 21:
Afghanistan vs. SA in Cardiff (D/N)

The Proteas were simply too much for the Afghans – 125 was not at all a competitive target for SA.

Toss: SA


Afghanistan 125 all out in 34.1 overs (Rashid Khan 35, Noor Ali Zadran 32, Hazratullah Zazai 22; Imran Tahir 4/29, Chris Morris 3/13, Andile Phehlukwayo 2/18)
South Africa (target 127 in 48 overs) 131/1 in 28.4 overs (Quinton de Kock 68, Hashim Amla 41 n.o.; Gulbadin Naib 1/29)

Result: SA won by nine wickets (under D/L Method)

Man of the Match: Imran Tahir of SA


Sunday, 16 June 2019 – Match 22:
India vs. Pakistan in Manchester

Pakistan continued to have their poor run against arch-rivals India in the World Cup competition. Mohammad Amir headed to the top of the list among bowlers with a tally of 13 wickets.

Toss: Pakistan


India 336/5 in 50 overs (Rohit Sharma 140 in 113 – 4×14, 6×3; Virat Kholi 77 in 65, Lokesh Rahul 57; Mohammad Amir 3/47)
Pakistan (target 302 in 40 overs) 212/6 in 40 overs (Fakhar Zaman 62, Babar Azam 48, Imad Wasim 46 n.o.; Vijay Shankar 2/22, Kuldeep Yadav 2/32, Hardik Pandya 2/44)

Result: India won by 89 runs (D/L Method)
Man of the Match: Rohit Sharma of India


Monday, 17 June 2019 – Match 23:
Bangladesh vs. WI in Taunton

The tigers roared. The Windies couldn’t defend 321 runs against the mighty Bangladeshis.

Toss: Bangladesh

WI 321/8 in 50 overs (Shai Hope 96, Ewin Lewis 70 in 67, Shimron Hetmyer 50 in 26; Mustafizur Rahman 3/59, Mohammad Saifuddin 3/72, Shakib Al Hasan 2/54)
Bangladesh 322/3 in 41.3 overs (Shakib Al Hasan 124 n.o. in 99, Linton Das 94 n.o. in 69; Andre Russell 1/42)

Result: Bangladesh won by seven wickets
Man of the Match: Shakib Al Hasan of Bangladesh


Tuesday, 18 June 2019 – Match 24:
Afghanistan vs. England in Manchester

Eoin Morgan 148 in 71 balls (4×4, 6×17)

Wow! It was a scintillating display. It was a massive 150-run defeat on the resurgent Afghanistan.
The records tumbled in the match:
* Most sixes by a batsman in an ODI innings – Morgan (17)
* Most sixes in an ODI innings – England (25)
* Highest score for England at a World Cup match – 397
* Most expensive bowling figures at a World Cup match – Rashid Khan (9-0-110-0)
* Most sixes conceded by an individual bowler – Rashid Khan (11)
* Morgan hit a six just about every fourth ball (17 sixes in 71 balls)

Toss: England


England 397/6 in 50 overs (Eoin Morgan 148 in 71 – 4×4, 6×17; Jonny Bairstow 90, Joe Root 88 in 82; Gulbadin Naib 3/68, Dawlat Zadran 3/85)
Afghanistan 247/8 in 50 overs (Hashmatullah Shahid 76, Rahmat Shah 46, Asghar Afghan 44; Jofra Archer 3/52, Adil Rashid 3/66)

Result: England won by 150 runs
Man of the Match: Eoin Morgan of England


Wednesday, 19 June 2019 – Match 25:
NZ vs. SA in Birmingham

Kane Williamson remembered that he is “Kane Williamson”. At 4/80 while chasing 242 to win, yet he phased his innings well until the Kiwis crossed the line with three balls to go, propelling NZ to the table-top spot after five out of nine games. They haven’t lost even one to be the only unbeaten side in the tournament along with India. After six matches, though, SA already lost four, putting them on the verge of exit from last four.

Toss: NZ


SA 241/6 in 49 overs (Rassie van der Dussen 67 n.o. in 64, Hashim Amla 55, Aiden Markram 38; Lockie Ferguson 3/59)
NZ (target 242 in 49 overs) 245/6 in 48.3 overs (Kane Williamson 106 n.o., Colin de Grandhomme 60 in 47, Martin Guptill 35; Chris Morris 3/49, Kagiso Rabada 1/42)

Result: NZ won by four wickets
Man of the Match: Kane Williamson of NZ


Thursday, 20 June 2019 – Match 26:
Australia vs. Bangladesh in Nottingham

David Warner 166 in 147 balls

David Warner carried Australia to another win. Yet, the tigers fought hard, showing their class once again.

Toss: Australia


Australia 381/5 in 50 overs (David Warner 166 in 147, Aaron Finch 53 in 51, Usman Khawaja 89 in 72; Soumya Sarkar 3/58)
Bangladesh 333/8 in 50 overs (Mushfiqur Rahim 102 n.o. in 97, Mahmudullah 69 in 50, Tamim Iqbal 62; Marcus Stoinis 2/54, Mitchell Starc 2/55, Nathan Coulter-Nile 2/58)

Result: Australia won by 48 runs
Man of the Match: David Warner of Australia


Friday, 21 June 2019 – Match 27:
England vs. SL at Leeds

Game changer Lasith Malinga took 4/43

A stunner! SL shocked world’s No.1 side at their own backyard, making the tournament wide open.

Toss: SL


SL 232/9 in 50 overs (Angelo Mathews 85 n.o., Avishka Fernando 49 in 39, Kusal Mendis 46; Mark Wood 3/40, Jofra Archer 3/52)
England 212 all out in 47 overs (Ben Stokes 82 n.o., Joe Root 57; Lasith Malinga 4/43, Dhananjaya De Silva 3/32, Isuru Udana 2/41)

Result: SL won by 20 runs
Man of the Match: Lasith Malinga of SL