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Authored by Jeremy Cage

3 facts about the 2011 World Cup Final one may not be aware of

The Indian Cricket Team lifted the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup after a dry spell of 28 years. 97 by Gautam Gambhir and MS Dhoni’s 91 Not Out helped India rewrite history at the historic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Before the big Final, there was speculation on who will win the match, but India was the hot favorites of course. It was a night to celebrate for the Indian side, but the same could not be said about the Sri Lankan unit. Sri Lanka had much to ponder on as it was their 2nd on the trot World Cup Final loss. They had earliest lost to Australia in the Caribbean in 2007 event. The Sri Lanka unit tried their best to repeat their 1996 winning performance, but it did not work well for them. On the eventful night of 2nd April 2011, a lot of records were made. Yes, a few of them were able to make headlines, while some of them could not. On that point, we bring to you a few of the facts that could not make it to the headlines. Read on!
It was the last international game of Muttiah Muralitharan In January 2011, the Sri Lankan great Muttiah Muralitharan said that he would be calling it quits after the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup. It went without saying that spin would play a crucial role in the sub-continent and may decide in who will win the match. Muttiah Muralitharan did not disappoint and went on to claim 15 wickets in 9 matches and was his Team’s standout bowler. It was owing to his spells that Sri Lanka made their way into the Finals. The focus was on India being the hot favourite with fewer people having doubt on who will win the match and Muralitharan did not expect to catch many eyeballs.
Indians knew of this prowess and took minimum risks against the spin maestro. Although he was economical in this spell, he failed to provide a breakthrough to the Team. Muttiah Muralitharan took 1,347 wickets while playing for his country but the Final night in Mumbai could not become a memorable one for him. Mahela Jayawardene’s knock went in vain Before the World Cup, 5 players had managed to hit tons in World Cup Finals. Most of them came in winning causes. But the destiny did not favour Mahela Jayawardene at the Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium. He walked to bat when the score was 60 for 2 and carried on till the end. He went on to hit a 103 Not Out in 88 balls with 13 boundaries. Despite not having most factors in his favor, he guided the Sri Lankan Team to a competitive 274/6. When he hit the ton, not many few Sri Lankan supporters had the doubt as to who will win the match. But sadly, his knock went down the drain as India lifted the Cup. It was majorly because even after the removal of Sachin and Sehwag by Malinga, they allowed India to get back firmly. Suraj Randiv made his World Cup debut Sri Lanka made 4 changes in the playing XI that featured in their Semi Final game. The off spinner, Suraj Randiv got to play for his country in a World Cup Final – it was the only match that he got to play in the World Cup. He was the only player in the history of the game to make his International debut directly in a World Cup Final. The changes did not work for the Team, and Randiv gave away 43 runs in 9 overs. Overall, he was not successful in stopping Indians from stealing runs in the middle overs. After Malinga got the initial breakthrough, it was up to Randiv to do the needful, but he could not. Owing to the lack of bowling penetration in the Lanka side, India walked away with the glory in the end.

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