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Thursday, January 07, 2010

Top Ten Cricket News of 2009

The year 2009 has finished after presenting some positive as well as negative news in the cricket world. Many things happened in world cricket in 2009. Australia’s overall dominance in cricket further faded away and it started a healthy competition for the no. 1 spot in both test and ODI forms of the game. However, cricket experienced a terror attack for the first time in 2009. So, overall it was a mixed year for cricket. Here, you can get the top ten cricket news of 2009:

England Regained Ashes Title from Australia

England, captained by Andrew Strauss, successfully defeated Australia 2-1 at home in Ashes series 2009. Strauss repeated the same success that England achieved four years back under the captaincy of Michael Vaughan. Australia regained Ashes title in 2007 winning all of the 5 test matches at home. 2009 Ashes series was also the farewell test series for former England captain Andrew Flintoff. Andrew Strauss and Michael Clarke were awarded with Player of the Series award.

Pakistan wins Twenty20 World Cup 2009

An inspirational Pakistan under the captaincy of Younis Khan won ICC World Twenty20 2009. This second edition of twenty20 world cup was held in England. All round performance from Shahif Afridi was instrumental behind Pakistan’s triumph in the tournament. Afridi took 23 wickets and scored 267 runs with 2 half centuries scored in the semi final and final matches. Pakistan defeated Sri Lanka by 8 wickets in the tournament final and Tillakaratne Dilshan was given the Player of the series award.

Sachin Tendulkar Reached 17,000 Runs in ODI Cricket

India’s little master Sachin Tendulkar became the first batsmen in world cricket to reach 17,000 runs in ODI form of the game. Tendulkar reached the milestone on his way to a remarkable innings of 175 runs that took India very close to a successful chase of Australia’s 350 runs in the fifth ODI in India. Tendulkar is the leading run scorer in both ODI and test cricket and has highest number of centuries in both forms of the game.

Lahore Terror Attack and Pakistan Stripped off as a Host of ICC World Cup 2011

Cricket world was shocked when a bus carrying Sri Lankan cricket team came under a terror attack on 3 March 2009. It happened near the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore when Sri Lankan team was heading towards the stadium to take part in third day’s play of the second test. The horrific attack left 8 people dead including 6 policemen and injured 6 Sri Lankan players. The series was cancelled straightaway, and since then no more international cricket has taken place in Pakistan. In the backdrop of the attack, Pakistan was stripped off as a host of ICC World Cup 2011 and Pakistan’s share of matches were distributed among the three other hosts: India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Australia Out of No. 1 Position in ICC Test Ranking

Australia’s demise in world cricket started in 2008 and it got more ground in 2009 when South Africa and India appeared as a big threat for the Aussies. India eventually finished the year at no.1 position in ICC test ranking. However, towards the end of the year, Australia could regain some of its pride in ODI form of the game winning the Champions Trophy 2009 and ODI series in India.

Debate over referral system in Cricket

Referral system was first introduced in cricket in 2008 during the test series between Sri Lanka and India. However, the referral system became a subject of huge debate in 2009. Cricket analysts, former and current players, journalists, umpires and fans all got involved in the debate over the implementation of the referral system. Under the referral system, each team in each innings can make maximum three unsuccessful appeals against the decisions of the on-field umpires and refer the decisions to the third umpire to give a final verdict upon checking the slow-motion videos of the play. There are many who believe that this system would prevent wrong decisions by the umpires, while many others think that referral system is a waste of time and it has some loopholes. Moreover, the cost of using this technology is also a matter of huge debate.

First Champions League Twenty20 Held in India

First edition of Champions League Twenty20 took place in 2009 in India. Organized by cricket boards of India, Australia, England and South Africa, the tournament featured 12 teams from 7 test playing nations: India, Sri Lanka, Australia, England, New Zealand, South Africa and West Indies. Australia’s New South Wales Blues won the tournament defeating Trinidad & Tobago from West Indies by 41 runs in the tournament final. Former Australian pacer Glenn McGrath won the player of the series award.

Australia Defended Champions Trophy Successfully

Australia successfully defended their Champions Trophy title in 2009 in South Africa. Going into the tournament as defending champion, Australia ended up winning the tournament without losing any game. Young Australian side game some inspirational performance and won their second successive Champions Trophy title. Ricky Ponting, who was given the player of the series award, was the highest scorer with 288 runs and Wayne Parnell was the highest wicket taker with 11 wickets in the tournament.

Sanath Jayasuria and Sachin Tendulkar Completed 20 Years in International Cricket

Sachin Tendulkar and Sanath Jayasuria, two veteran batsmen from India and Sri Lanka respectively, celebrated their 20th year in international cricket in 2009. Tendulkar began his international career with a limited over match against Pakistan on 18 December 1989, while Jayasuria came into international cricket against Australia on 26 December 1889. Both the players captained their respective countries in cricket at some point of their career.

Mass Exodus of West Indies Players due to Contractual Conflict with Cricket Board

A conflict between West Indies players and cricket board over contractual issue led to a mass exodus in the West Indies national team. Almost all the regular players including Captain Chris Gayle refused to play before the home series against Bangladesh, unless they are given a new central contract. Eventually, WICB announced a second string side for the test and ODI series where they were easily beaten by the visiting side. The conflict continued till the Champions Trophy and the deadlock between the players and board resolved before their tour of Australia.

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