You get to know a lot about the character of a player when the team is under the pump. When it’s one-way traffic, the players don’t get tested temperamentally that much, but when the whips are cracking, it’s a test of not just your skills as a player, but your temperament as well.
Let’s have a look at 5 instances where some of India’s players showed tremendous composure under pressure and turned the tide to help India win the match from losing positions.
Natwest Trophy Final, 2002
The men in blue were chasing a huge target of 327 against England and lost half their side at the score of just 146. The equation was down to 181 runs in 26 overs with just two recognized batsmen left in Yuvraj Singh and Mohammed Kaif.
Both were young players and not much was expected from them at that point in time, however, the way they fought in an adverse scenario, revealed their character and determination.
While Yuvraj got out in the middle of the chase at the score of 69, Kaif guided the chase all the way through with an unbeaten knock of 87, and India eventually won the game by 2 wickets.
ICC Cricket World Cup 2011’s quarter-final
India had lost half their side in the 38th over in their pursuit of the target of 261. The equation stood at almost a run a ball which was not much of a worry, but the fact that Australia had got three express fast bowlers and India’s no. 7 Suresh Raina was a bit susceptible against pace and bounce, Australia had an upper hand.
However, the way Raina handled the short balls in that game was commendable. A match-winning partnership between Yuvraj Singh and Raina saw India through to the semi-final.
Champions Trophy Final, 2013
The English team was storming towards a title-clinching victory with just 20 needed off 16 balls and they had 6 wickets in hand. The way Eoin Morgan and Ravi Bopara were striking the ball, it seemed a mere formality for them to drag England over the line.
However, MS Dhoni’s masterstroke to bring Ishant Sharma back into the attack completely changed the complexion of the game. Ishant dismissed both Morgan and Bopara on back to back deliveries and England eventually fell 5 runs short of India’s target.
Celkon Tri-series Final, 2013
India needed 15 runs in the last over to beat Sri Lanka and clinch the title. It was an uphill task considering the fact that it was an extremely tough pitch and both the teams had managed to score at the rate of only around 4 runs per over up until that time.
However, MS Dhoni hit the young Sri Lankan fast bowler Shaminda Eranga for 2 sixes and a four off the first four balls of the 50th over and clinched the title easily for India.
India vs England, 2017
Chasing down a target of 351 runs in the series opener, India lost 4 wickets for just 63 runs. Four out of the top five batsmen were back in the hut and it looked a lost cause for India from there. But, Virat Kohli and Kedar Jadhav had other ideas.
Both of them scored hundreds and put on a partnership of 200 runs off just 147 balls for the 5th wicket.
Although Kohli and Jadhav got dismissed after completing their hundreds, Hardik Pandya and Ravichandran Ashwin finished the job for India with Pandya remaining unbeaten on 40.