5 cricketers who faded away after successful ODI or T20 World Cup campaigns

sounak.mullick

A cricketer's ultimate aim is to get a hand on the coveted World Cup, which is by far the greatest trophy in the sport.

There are many greats who made it big in the mega event, while some never managed to win a single World Cup in spite of ruling the game for the rest of their career. But there have also been instances when a player performed extraordinarily well in a World Cup or a World T20, and then failed to carry on the momentum following the triumph.

Let us have a look at 5 cricketers who faded away after successful World Cup campaigns:

#5 Ryan Sidebottom (England, 2010 ICC World T20)

Ryan Sidebottom in action during the 2010 ICC World T20

Ryan Sidebottom is a disciplined left-arm bowler who made his debut against Pakistan in 2001. He was overlooked for 6 years after that, and he played his next match in 2007 against the West Indies - taking 8 wickets in the match.

His father Arnie played a lone Test for the Three Lions and was a very successful footballer who represented Manchester United, Huddersfield and Halifax.

Ryan played 22 Tests for England, taking 79 wickets, and could have easily played more if he had not announced his international retirement in September 2010 following England’s win at the World Cup T20 in West Indies.

The World T20 was the first major ICC tournament win for England, and Sidebottom’s useful spells were more than handy in the context of the triumph.

He was the highest wicket-taker for England along with Graeme Swann, who both took 10 wickets each. The medium pacer got a couple of wickets in the final at Barbados too, which England won by 7 wickets.

Sidebottom featured in a couple of matches after that before bidding adieu from all formats 4 months later.

#4 Asanka Gurusinha (Sri Lanka, 1996 World Cup)

Asanka Gurusinha played exceptionally well in the 1996 World Cup final

Asanka Gursinha was a dependable batsman for Sri Lanka from the mid-80s to the mid-90s. He was renowned for his calm and composed innings which helped the Lankans immensely in crunch situations.

Having played 41 Test matches, Gurusinha scored 2452 runs at an average of 38.92 including 7 centuries to his name.

But he will be best remembered for his courageous batting display during the 1996 ICC Cricket World Cup. Gurusinha was the second highest run scorer for Sri Lanka in the tournament, and his 65-run knock in the final against Australia at the Gaddafi Stadium was crucial for the island nation's maiden World Cup triumph.

The 125-run stand between Gursuinha and Aravinda de Silva took the game away completely from the Australians, and Sri Lanka became the third Asian country to win the coveted trophy.

But Gurusinha's form declined after the tournament and he retired within a year.

#3 Joginder Sharma (India, 2007 ICC World T20)

Joginder Sharma celebrates during the 2007 T20 World Cup

The 2007 World T20 win was a remarkable feat by the Indian cricket team as no one had predicted such an outcome prior to the start of the tournament. In a hard-fought final in Johannesburg, India got the better of arch-rivals Pakistan, and Joginder Sharma was one of the main heroes of the clash.

Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni tossed the ball to the man from Haryana in the last over of the match. The mighty Misbah-ul-Haq was at the crease, looking in control to steer his nation to a famous win.

Fate had other plans though. The Pakistani hit a six off the second ball of the over after the first ball was a dot. But off the third ball, the right-hander tried to clear the short fine leg fielder and got a leading edge which found S. Sreesanth’s safe hands.

India ended up lifting the trophy and Joginder Sharma was a national hero. Unfortunately however, that was the last T20 international he ever played. 

#2 Gary Gilmour (Australia, 1975 World Cup)

Gary Gilmour in action during the 1975 Cricket World Cup

Gary Gilmour was a crafty left-arm swing bowler who bloomed in the mid-70s and also had clinical hard-hitting abilities with the willow. Though his international career was short, he managed to register some memorable performances.

The southpaw from New South Wales played just 5 ODIs, out of which two were during the inaugural Cricket World Cup in 1975.

Gilmour was shown faith by the Australian team management in the semi-final against hosts England, and he delivered with style, taking 6 wickets for just 14 runs and guiding his team to the finals. He became an obvious choice for the final at the iconic Lord’s against the mighty West Indies.

It was due to his brilliant bowling display that they managed to restrict the opponents to a challenging 291; Gilmour dismissed their skipper Clive Llyod for 102, who was looking dangerous. But his five-for could not save the Aussies, as they fell short by 17 runs.

Following his heroics in the World Cup, Gilmour played a lone ODI later that year. The former cricketer passed away in 2014.

#1 Michael Hendrick (England, 1979 World Cup)

Michael Hendrick was the highest wicket-taker during the 1979 Cricket World Cup

The most striking feature about the English bowler was his average of 19.45 in the 22 ODIs he played. But Michael Hendrick hardly got any recognition unlike his teammates Ian Botham and Chris Old.

The main highlight of his career was the 1979 Cricket World Cup, where he was the highest wicket-taker of the tournament with 10 scalps to his name.

The former Derbyshire player took 4 wickets against Pakistan and also 3 against New Zealand in the semi-finals, and helped the Three Lions qualify for the final of the World Cup on home soil.

The defending champions West Indies put up yet another spirited performance. Hendricks dismissed Alvin Kallicharran and Andy Roberts, but that didn't stop the lethal Viv Richards from scoring a century and setting up a total of 286 from the stipulated 60 overs.

In reply, Mike Brearley and Geoffrey Boycott were cruising along with each scoring half centuries. But they were sent back to the pavilion the English line-up collapsed like a house of cards, falling short of the total by 92 runs.

Hendrick played only a handful of matches following that, featuring in his last match a couple of years later in 1981.