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By Bharath Seervi
Over the years, there have been instances when in One-Day Internationals (ODIs) batsmen have hit a six off the final ball of the match to win a pulsating encounter. The great Javed Miandad from Pakistan known for playing well under pressure-cooker situations was one of them. He took his game to towering heights to win a nerve-wracking contest for his country against arch-rivals India on April 18 1986 in Austral-Asia Cup.
Below is a list of players who have done it during the last ball of the match to win a game for his country in ODIs.
Javed Miandad smashes Chetan Sharma for a six (India vs Pakistan, Sharjah, 1986)
Miandad smashed a six off the last ball, while facing Indian seamer, Chetan at Sharjah in April 1986. It happened in the Austral-Asia Cup final. Even now the match is remembered by cricket enthusiasts. Four runs were required to win off the last ball.
Lance Klusner essays a six, while facing Dion Nash (New Zealand vs South Africa, Napier, 1999)
On March 26, 1999, South African all-rounder, Klusner thumped the then New Zealand captain, Nash to win the game for South Africa during the last ball of the match. Actually, four runs were required off the last ball.
Brendan Taylor thwacks Mashrafe Bin Mortaza for a six (Zimbabwe vs Bangladesh, Harare Sports Club, 2006)
While chasing a modest target of 237, Zimbabwean captain, Taylor played a fine knock to take his team to victory. He smashed six off the last ball of the match to clinch the win for his team. Five runs were needed during the last ball for victory.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul smashes Chaminda Vaas for a six (West Indies vs Sri Lanka, Port of Spain, 2008)
West Indian middle-order batsman, Chanderpaul took his team to a fine win over Sri Lanka at Port of Spain by smashing pacer, Vaas for a six off the final ball of the game. Six runs were needed during the final ball of the game.
Ed Rainsford smashes Kevin ‘O Brien for a six (Zimbabwe vs Ireland, Harare Sports Club, 2010)
Zimbabwe’s tail-ender, Rainsford won a game for his country too against Ireland in 2010 with a six off the final ball of the match. The bowler was O’Brien. One run was required, during the last ball of the game.
Ryan McLaren smashes James Franklin for a six (South Africa vs New Zealand, Potchefstroom, 2013)
South African all-rounder, McLaren thumped left-arm pacer, Franklin for a six to win it for his country at Potchefstroom in 2013. During the last ball of the game, South Africa needed three runs for a fine victory.
Nathan McCullum smashes Rangana Herath for a six (Sri Lanka vs New Zealand, Hambantota, 2013)
New Zealand’s all-rounder McCullum thumped spinner, Herath for a six during the final ball of a rain reduced game game at Hambantota in 2013. One run was required to win the game for New Zealand.
It takes great temperament to smash the last ball for a six to take the team to a victory. One can only salute the above mentioned players for their grit and gumption.
(Bharath Seervi is a cricket statistician who is obsessed with digging numbers, facts and records related to the game. An active member of Society of Cricket Statisticians of India, he blogs at www.cricketseervistats.blogspot.com. He can be followed on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SeerviBharath and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SeerviCricket)
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