The ongoing season of international cricket has been extremely unpredictable and hence, entertaining. The results that we have witnessed during the last few months are an evidence of how the gap between the top and bottom ranked teams in all three formats of the game is beginning to reduce.
Here is a look at top 7 upsets that the current season has offered to us so far and it is no surprise that the list features two of the most unpredictable teams in the world i.e. Pakistan and the West Indies on more than one occasion.
7. PAK VSWI (Second Test, Barbados)
Having won the first Test in Jamaica Pakistan were firm favorites to win the second Test in Barbados and seal the series with it. However, both sides lived up to their reputation of being unpredictable and eventually, West Indies out-played a better ranked Pakistan team to clinch victory by 106 runs.
6. PAK VS SAand PAK VS ENG (ICC CT 2017)
Cricket Pundits around the globe had no doubt that the group game between Pakistan and South Africa during the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 was a mis-match and that the tournament’s top ranked side South Africa should walk over the bottom ranked Pakistan to secure an easy victory.
Similarly, even after having qualified for the semi-finals the men in green were considered to be too weak an opponent to challenge the host side England.
However, Pakistan managed comfortable victories against both sides and left the experts shell shocked!
5. IND VS SL (ICC CT 2017)
Having beaten Pakistan comprehensively in the first group match and after scoring 321 runs on the board India were considered to have booked their place for the next round of Champions Trophy 2017. However, a brilliant performance with the bat from the Sri Lankans made way for yet another upset during the ICC event.
4. BAN VS NEWZEALAND (ICC CT 2017)
Despite being a much improved side; on paper Bangladesh had no chance of beating the Kiwis in English conditions during the group stage of the ICC Champions Trophy, 2017. However, since the game is not played on paper,a spirited Bangladesh performance was able to produce an upset that resulted in putting New Zealand out of the tournament.
3. SL VS ZIM (ODI , Galle)
A team like Zimbabwe that is not even amongst the top ten teams in the ICC rankings chased over 300 runs in Galle, Sri Lanka during a bilateral series to register an unbelievable victory against the home team.
The defeat now leaves Sri Lanka in slight bother as more hick ups before the cut-off date (i.e. 30th of September, 2017) might make a direct qualification scenario for the next world cup difficult and hence, the islanders now have little choice but to pull up their socks.
2. IND VS WI
West Indies is another side that is struggling for a direct qualification to the next world cup and the probability of them missing out is a lot more than Sri Lanka or any other bottom ranked side. Nevertheless, the Caribbeans have just done themselves a huge favour by producing an upset and beating India by 11 runs in a game that was part of the ongoing bilateral series.
Another upset victory should guarantee a series draw and hence, a better chance to ensure a direct qualification for next ICC world cup.
1. PAK Vs IND (Final, ICC CT 2017)
Despite a poor record against the arch-rivals India both during the recent years and particularly, in the ICC events, Pakistan was able to defy history and clinch a comprehensive victory in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy, 2017.The impact of the upset of such that it left the entire Pakistan jubilant and the whole of India suffering from depression!
Still, the fact that tournaments weakest side (in terms of ranking) was able to lift the trophy goes onto show the unpredictable nature of world cricket around the globe these days.