Pakistan's Premier Multilingual News Agency

T20 World Cup journey: From modest beginnings to thrilling climax

Islamabad, 8 June,2024(GNP): Journey through the enthralling evolution of T20 cricket, from its beginning to the upcoming World Cup in the USA and West Indies.

Recall historic competitions and unforgettable moments that have defined this thrilling format.

Cricket began in the 16th century in England and has endured numerous transformations. Test cricket, the oldest and most traditional format, laid the foundation.

Introducing One Day Internationals (ODIs) added excitement with colorful kits and white balls.

However, it was in 2003 that England revolutionized the game by introducing the T20 format, which promptly became a global sensation.

The opening of international T20 match between Australia and New Zealand in 2005 set the stage for T20 series.

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The first ICC T20 World Cup, hosted by South Africa in 2007, saw 12 teams compete in a highly entertaining tournament.

The India vs. Pakistan group match was a standout, ending in a dramatic tie and subsequent bowl-out, where India won.

Under Shoaib Malik’s captaincy, Pakistan advanced to the finals but was narrowly defeated by India in a heart-stopping finale.

Misbah-ul-Haq’s valiant efforts almost clinched the victory, but India emerged victorious under MS Dhoni’s leadership.

In 2009, among political tumult and terrorism in Pakistan, the national cricket team, led by Younis Khan and powered by Shahid Afridi’s all-round brilliance, clinched the T20 World Cup in England.

Despite a shaky start, Pakistan’s historic win over Sri Lanka in the final brought the nation a wave of joy and pride.

Later on tournaments continued to deliver remarkable moments. In 2010, Pakistan reached the semi-finals but lost to Australia in a thrilling finish.

The 2012 edition saw West Indies, led by Marlon Samuels and Sunil Narine, win over hosts Sri Lanka.

The 2014 tournament in Bangladesh crowned Sri Lanka champions after they defeated India in the final.

The 2016 T20 World Cup in India featured an iconic final where West Indies’ Carlos Brathwaite hit four consecutive sixes off Ben Stokes to win the title.

In 2021, Pakistan made history by defeating India for the first time in a World Cup match, thanks to stellar performances by Shaheen Shah Afridi, Mohammad Rizwan, and Babar Azam.

The excitement is perceptible as we look ahead to the 2024 T20 World Cup, hosted jointly by the USA and West Indies. Pakistan, led by Babar Azam, aims to recreate its past glory.

Despite a unexpected loss to minnows USA in their opening match, the team remains determined to perform well and make its mark.

The much expected clash between Pakistan and India on June 9 in New York pledges to be a tournament highlight.