Waiting For A World Cup Upset

Six days into the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, and we are still waiting for our first upset as so far the tournament has gone as expected with the favourites winning each game.

Only England, who were pushed a lot closer than they would have felt comfortable with by the Netherlands, have come close to slipping up with India, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Australia, Pakistan and South Africa all registering comprehensive victories.

Bangladesh had high hopes of causing an upset in the tournament’s opening game on home soil but their plans were ruined by a once-in-a-lifetime innings of 175 from Virender Sehwag – a score that is already unlikely to be bettered throughout the duration of the World Cup.

Kenya – semi-finalists in 2003, remember – were handed sound thrashings by New Zealand and Pakistan, making only 69 and 112 with the bat while Zimbabwe made Australia work hard but were eventually outclassed and beaten by 91 runs.

Canada, as expected, proved to be no match for Sri Lanka, although they won’t be the only side to struggle against the co-hosts, who with Mahela Jayawardene in top form, will go deep into the tournament and must be the favourites to top Group A.

While the West Indies are no minnows, they were always up against it when they took on a well-drilled, well-disciplined South African outfit and came up well short, beaten by seven wickets with AB de Villiers in sparkling form. In their defence, they have been hit hard by injuries, losing Carlton Baugh and Adrian Barath to hamstring problems ahead of the tournament and then lost Dwayne Bravo during his bowling spell.

With moves afoot to trim the World Cup to ten nations and potentially denying the Associate nations the chance to compete at the highest level, what nobody needed was a series of non-contests. Some will say that it was a great shame that the Netherlands didn’t able to hold on against England and show everybody that while they might not be playing Test cricket, there is no reason why they shouldn’t be playing at World Cups.

Some would claim that the fact that they got close enough to worry England was enough to justify their inclusion in this, and future World Cups, in any case. But what do you think? Should the World Cup remain open to the best Associate nations or should it be a closed shop, open only to the top ten sides in the world?

23 Responses to “Waiting For A World Cup Upset”

  • dclogic:

    Holland and Ireland have to be there!
    I think they deserve to be at the world cup. What’s the point in it being closed shop? The best football tournaments (in my opinion) the WORLD CUP and the FA CUP are open to almost all (nations/english clubs,) and although i accept far less nations play any real level of cricket, I don’t think the number of teams in the world cup is really the problem.
    It lasts forever!!!!!!!!!!
    I think scotland and Afganistan should be there too.
    If the world rankings at the time of the world cup draw allowed the top four to be top seeds, then next second seeds etc the top 16 could be put in 4 groups of four. 3 games in the groups, best two group winners and worst two second places make round 2 group as do the worst two group winners with the other two runners-up. 3 matches again followed by semis (best winner v other groups runner-up) and final.
    and of course more than one game a day! It isn’t too many games, just too spread out.
    I would prefer this anyway so there :p