ICL: Indian Cricket League

Chokers Choked Yet Again

Written by F Mirza on September 22nd, 2007   (322 views)

Australians never get tired of labelling South African cricket team as ‘chokers’. It was an irritant joke for the Protean team, but now after their un-convincing, and rather strangly lame performance against India in the Twenty20 World Cup super eight match, in which they were thrown out of the tournament, the word ‘choker’ has become a haunting reality for them.

South Africa was the favourite for this title, even surpassing Australia, the world champions, and until this match against India, they were unbeaten in this tournament. May be it seemed bit weird to Graeme Smith, the skipper of South African team, to get out of the tournament by losing just one match, but this is how things turn-out at the crucial junctures of the tournaments.

Graeme Smith was livid, when a South African journalist spoke out the word ‘Choker’ in front of them. Graeme scolded him at the spot and said,”I guess I expected that question from you.” South Africa have an interesting and rich history of choking at the critical junctures of the tournaments. They have developed a strange tendency to perform optimum throughout the grand tournaments and then just succumb at the last moment, when the glory is just at the arm’s length.

This happened to them in 1999 world cup at Edgbaston, where Herschelle Gibbs, Mark Boucher and Shaun Pollock were present, and when Gibbs Steve Waugh, Steve told Gibbs that he had just dropped the world cup. Then in-between lots of small and medium chokes happened. In 2003, South Africa crucified due to Duckworth/Lewis rule, when Mark Boucher went bonkers, and didnt took a single off Murali, which would have taken South Africa to the Super Sixes. In 2002, in Champions Trophy in Srilanka, India was the one which gagged South Africa.

Then came 2007 world cup of carribbean, in which Australia again strangled South Africa in the semi-finals in St Lucia. How could South Africa won that semi final against Australia, when they were 27 for 5.

As the Allan Border, the former Australian legend said about South Africa, “They have got to shake that chokers tag. They keep missing out in the big moments, the big tournaments.”

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This entry was posted on Saturday, September 22nd, 2007 and is filed under General.

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