Dhaka, March 26 (IANS) South Africa’s worst fears came true Friday as they once again failed to win a World Cup knock-out match since making their debut in the mega event in 1992.It was rain in 1992, the brilliance of Brian Lara in 1996, a moment of madness in 1999, rain and madness in 2003 and Thursday at the Sher-e-Bangla they again succumbed to pressure. They were the losing semi-finalists in 1992, 1999 and 2007, and got eliminated in the quarter-finals in 1996.
The following is the list of South Africa’s bizarre losses in the World Cup knock out stage:
1992 World Cup (semi-final): Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney, March 22
England 252/6 (45 overs) vs. South Africa 232/6 (43 overs). Result: England won by 19 runs (rain rule).
The match ended in a controversial fashion as rain interruption in the last ball of the 43rd over left South Africa with an impossible target of 21 runs from one ball. The scoreboard and the TV coverage incorrectly displayed South Africa needing 22 off 7 balls, then the actual requirement of 21 off one ball. Chris Lewis bowled the last ball with slow medium pace and Brian McMillan took a single with a push to midwicket.
1996 World Cup (quarterfinal): National Stadium, Karachi, March 11
West Indies 264/8 in 50 overs. South Africa 245 all out in 49.3 overs. Result: West Indies won
Brian Lara stirred a controversy after their shocking loss to debutant Kenya saying he was happier to have lost to a team of blacks than a team of whites. The remarks were directed at the South Africans and in the match he talked to the Proteas in the language he knows best, an innings of 111 off 94 balls that dashed the South African hopes again.
1999 World Cup (semi-final): Edgbaston, Brimingham, June 17
Australia 213 in 49.2 overs. South Africa 213 in 49.4 overs. Match tied but eventual champions Australia progressed to the final because they finished higher in the super six table than South Africa.
South Africa needed nine off the final over and Lance Klusener belted the first two deliveries for four. South Africa now needed one to win. The third ball went straight to a fielder, Allan Donald was already half way down and would have been run out if Darren Lehmann had hit the stumps. The fourth wasn’t much of a shot either, but Klusener said ‘yes’. Donald disagreed and didn’t move, but as Klusener passed him, Donald realised he had to go, but it was too late.
2003 World Cup: Playing hosts, South Africa failed to get past the group stage.
2007 World Cup (semi-final): Beausejour Stadium, Gros Islet, St.Lucia, March 25
South Africa 149 all out in 43.5 overs. Australia 153/3 in 31.3 overs. Result: Australia won by seven wickets.
South Africa collapsed to 27/5 inside 10 overs and never recovered from that. They failed to cope with the pace of Glenn McGrath (3/18) and Shaun Tait (4/39). It turned out to be an easy win for the Australians.