The T20 World Cup is the most prestigious international T20 tournament in the world. It is every cricketer’s dream to represent his nation at the global event.
The T20 World Cup 2021 will begin in the United Arab Emirates and Oman this Sunday with the qualifying round. The warm-up matches for the tournament will also begin soon.
IPL 2021 is currently happening in the UAE, and fans have witnessed multiple low-scoring matches in the Gulf nation. It should not be a surprise if the same trend continues during the T20 World Cup 2021.
The bowling units will have more responsibility on their shoulders. If the batters fail to score big, they will have to bring their ‘A’ game to the table and defend low totals.
Speaking of defending low scores, many teams have pulled off wins while defending a below-par total in T20 World Cup history.
In this article today, we will look at the top three lowest scores defended by teams in T20 World Cup matches.
3. New Zealand – 126 vs. India, ICC T20 World Cup 2016
New Zealand hold the record for the lowest total defended in T20 World Cup matches against India. The Kiwis won a match while defending just 126 runs against the Indian cricket team in Nagpur.
NZ skipper Kane Williamson won the toss and decided to bat first at the VCA Stadium. A disciplined bowling performance from India restricted the Kiwis to 126/7 in their 20 overs.
Chasing 127 to start their T20 World Cup 2016 campaign on a winning note, India lost wickets at regular intervals and were down to 43/7. MS Dhoni tried his best to save the day with a 30-run knock.
However, New Zealand bowled India out for just 79 runs. Ish Sodhi bowled a spell of 3/11, while Mitchell Santner took a four-wicket haul.
2. Afghanistan – 123 vs. West Indies, ICC T20 World Cup 2016
Another low-scoring match that happened in Nagpur during the 2016 T20 World Cup was Match 30 of the tournament featuring Afghanistan and West Indies.
Afghanistan had lost their first three Super 10 games but ended their campaign with a memorable win against eventual champions West Indies.
A 40-ball 48 from Najibullah Zadran helped Afghanistan post a 123-run score in 20 overs. Samuel Badree took three wickets for the Men in Maroon.
Chasing 124 in the second innings, West Indies failed to tackle the Afghan bowlers’ spin. Mohammad Nabi (2/26), Amir Hamza (1/9), Rashid Khan (2/26) and Samiullah Shinwari (0/22) did not allow easy runs in their 16 overs.
In the end, West Indies managed just 117/8 in 20 overs and lost by six runs.
1. Sri Lanka – 119 vs. New Zealand, ICC T20 World Cup 2014
Sri Lanka own the record for the lowest total defended in T20 World Cup history. The islanders set the record during the 2014 edition of the tournament hosted by Bangladesh.
Three-wicket hauls from Trent Boult and James Neesham kept Sri Lanka down to 119/8 in the first innings.
Kane Williamson played a decent knock of 42 runs in the second innings but the other Kiwi batters bowed down to the Sri Lankan bowlers as the Blackcaps got skittled out for only 60 runs.
Rangana Herath bowled a dream spell of 5/3 in 3.3 overs, while Sachithra Senanayake conceded three runs in his three overs and took two wickets as Sri Lanka recorded a 59-run win.