AUSTRALIA defied the odds to win their second ODI World Cup in 1999. The Steve Waugh-led side needed a win against South Africa to progress to the semifinals. Australia had a task on hand after a magnificent 101 by Herchelle Gibbs helped the Proteas to a huge score of 271.
Australia were rattled early in a big chase by Steve Elworthy, who removed Adam Gilchrist and Damien Martin to leave Australia reeling at 48-3. Ricky Ponting (69) and Steve Waugh stabilized the Australian innings with a 126-run partnership for the fourth wicket.
Steve Waugh Make South Africa Pay After Gibbs’ Bizarre Drop Catch
South Africa did get a chance to remove Steve Waugh in the 31st over but Herchelle Gibbs dropped a bizarre catch to give the Australian captain a huge reprieve. Waugh hit Lance Klusener’s delivery straight to Gibbs at mid-on who initially caught the ball but spilled it when he tried the throw the ball up in the air to celebrate the dismissal. Waugh went on to score 120 as Australia sealed a semifinal berth against the same opposition.
Australia Defy Odds To Reach 1999 World Cup Final
Australia had their backs against the wall once again after South Africa bowled out them for a mere 213. Steve Waugh (56) and Michael Beven (65) were the only batters who resisted the Proteas’ bowling and helped Australia to a fighting score.
South Africa got off to a steady start with Gibbs and Gary Kirsten adding 48 runs. Shane Warne removed both openers in quick succession to bring Australia back into the game. The wickets kept on falling at regular intervals and despite valiant efforts from Jacques Kallis (53) and Jonty Rhodes (43), South Africa were bowled out for 213, with the game ending as a tie.
Brain-Fade Moment For Lance Klusner
The Proteas were set for a win when Lance Klusener whacked the first two deliveries of the 50th over by Damien Fleming for boundaries, leaving South Africa just one to win in the remaining four balls, with one wicket in hand. However, a brain-fade moment by Allan Donald saw him getting run out, with South Africa giving away a golden opportunity to play the final. Australia moved into the final on account of their win over South Africa in the league stage. Australia beat Pakistan in the final to win their second World Cup.
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