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5 biggest upsets in Cricket World Cup history

The history of Cricket World Cup has not been very long. Beginning from 1975, the World Cup completed its 12th edition and India will be hosting the 13th in 2023.


With very few teams featuring in cricket’s showpiece event, the upsets have also been rare. But they have always been very enthralling. Today we are going to talk about the biggest upset results in Cricket World Cup History. This is our own ranking and hope this satisfies you. Here we go: 

5. Ireland beat England by 3 wickets in 2011 World Cup

Before earning the Test status, Ireland were tagged giant killers and their three-wicket victory over England in the Indian sub-continent was one of them.

Well, no one had given Ireland an outside chance after England notched up a mammoth 327 and reduced their neighbours to just 111-5 at one stage of the game.

And then came a whirlwind named Kevin O’Brien. Unperturbed by
the fall of wickets in a huge chase, Kevin smashed the English bowlers and went on to score World Cup’s fastest century which came in just 50 deliveries.

Kevin went on to share 162-run match winning stand with Alex
Cusack and although he was dismissed, John Mooney took the Irish across the finishing line to mark one of the glorious days of their cricket history.

4. Bangladesh shock India by five wickets

After Sourav Ganguly led India to the 2003 World Cup, India headed to the Caribbean four years later as clear favourites under their new captain Rahul Dravid.

India had a star-studded line-up but very few knew that it was team that needed transformation which MS Dhoni would later go on to do. Strong on papers, India elected to bat first in the rain-affected tournament but were shut down for just 191 runs after Mashrafe Mortaza picked up four wickets.

Tamim Iqbal, Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al-Hassan then completed half century as Bangladesh reached the target in 48.3 overs. The Tigers’ first ever victory over any Indian team in their cricket history not only guided them to the second round but also knocked the giants out of the World Cup from the first round.

3. Kenya stun West Indies

Yes you read it right. Its Kenya whose cricket at the top level is not in existence. This was probably the first ever shock result in World Cup history. West Indies were in a good run of form during the 90s. The boasted a modest batting attack headed by the phenomenon Brian Lara. But in the 1996 World Cup jointly hosted by India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, Kenya had other ideas.

Batting first, Kenyan innings was closed out for just 166 runs. People thought it would be a cake walk for the Windies but the two-time world champions were skittled out for just 93 runs in just 35.3 overs.

2. Ireland stings Pakistan

If you think 2011 victory over England was Ireland’s biggest achievement, then you are wrong. Ireland actually had already developed the knack of doing uncertain things and they started with the mighty Pak scalp in Caribbean. One of the unpredictable teams in world cricket, Pakistan were under the late Bob Wolmer expecting to overcome the match-fixing scandal in Lord’s. But their agony continued in the 2007 showpiece event.

In Kingston, Ireland bowled out Pakistan for just 132 runs and it was Kevin’s brother Niall who had delivered that time. Niall composed 72
helped Ireland reach 133-7 in 41.4 overs for a famous victory.

 1. Tiny Tigers tame Pak juggernaut


It was the time when Bangladesh were the smallest team in world cricket with not even Test status to their name. Having booked England tickets after winning the Qualifying tournament, Bangladesh built on to a modest 223 in Northampton after they were put to bat first.

Khaled Mahmud then picked up three wickets as Pakistan were 161 all out in 44.3 overs. A jubilant Bangladesh squad celebrated the history with their rousing supporters who invaded the pitch soon after the game was over. It is said that the victory over Pakistan was one of the reasons why the ICC decided to hand Bangladesh the Test status next year.

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