The ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 was the 11th edition of the mega event, and was being jointly hosted by Australia (26 games) and New Zealand (23 games). It was a round-robin cum knockout format that took a month and a half to complete. This is a one-stop page, which will give you the Cricket World Cup 2015 schedule, fixtures list, predictions, and of course, the results.
2015 World Champs
All you cricket lovers, the place to be this Feb-March was New Zealand and Australia. From February to March, fourteen teams from across the globe clashed for the most coveted trophy in cricket – the ICC Cricket World Cup. With a few rule changes and the popularity of T20 cricket having changed the way ODIs are played off late, it was billed to be the most exciting cricket World Cup ever. But one thing would not have changed; the team that can play consistently good cricket for the duration of a month and a half would lift the cup, and the almost USD 4 million prize money, on the 29th of March.
So who did you think would win the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015? Though there were a few favorites, aspects like home ground advantage, weather conditions, team composition, experience, and current form were sure to play a major part in the overall outcome. Nevertheless, here are the predictions for the 2015 Cricket World Cup, along with details of the venues, schedule, fixtures, and daily updates as they happened.
2015 ICC Cricket World Cup
SCHEDULE & RESULTS: KNOCKOUTS
|Mar 18||(QF 1) South Africa bt. Sri Lanka by 9 wickets|
|Mar 19||(QF 2) India bt. Bangladesh by 109 runs|
|Mar 20||(QF 3) Australia bt. Pakistan by 6 wickets|
|Mar 21||(QF 4) New Zealand bt. West Indies by 143 runs|
|Mar 24||(SF 1) New Zealand bt. South Africa by 4 wickets|
|Mar 26||(SF 2) Australia bt. India by 95 runs|
|Mar 29||(F) Australia bt. New Zealand by 7 wickets|
|South Africa||South Africa||New Zealand||2015
|New Zealand||New Zealand|
|COUNTRY||PLAYED||WON||LOST||TIED||NR||NET RUN RATE||POINTS|
|New Zealand (Q)||6||6||0||0||0||+2.5||12|
|Sri Lanka (Q)||6||4||2||0||0||+0.3||8|
(Top 4 teams qualify for knockout stage) Q = Qualified · E = Eliminated
|COUNTRY||PLAYED||WON||LOST||TIED||NR||NET RUN RATE||POINTS|
|West Indies (Q)||6||3||3||0||0||-0.1||6|
(Top 4 teams qualify for knockout stage) Q = Qualified · E = Eliminated
SCHEDULE & RESULTS: GROUPS
|Feb 14||New Zealand bt. Sri Lanka by 98 runs|
|Feb 14||Australia bt. England by 111 runs|
|Feb 15||South Africa bt. Zimbabwe by 62 runs|
|Feb 15||India bt. Pakistan by 76 runs|
|Feb 16||Ireland bt. West Indies by 4 wickets|
|Feb 17||New Zealand bt. Scotland by 3 wickets|
|Feb 18||Bangladesh bt. Afghanistan by 105 runs|
|Feb 19||Zimbabwe bt. UAE by 4 wickets|
|Feb 20||New Zealand bt. England by 8 wickets|
|Feb 21||West Indies bt. Pakistan by 150 runs|
|Feb 21||Australia v/s Bangladesh – no result (rain)|
|Feb 22||India bt. South Africa by 130 runs|
|Feb 22||Sri Lanka bt. Afghanistan by 4 wickets|
|Feb 23||England bt. Scotland by 119 runs|
|Feb 24||West Indies bt. Zimbabwe by 73 runs|
|Feb 25||Ireland bt. UAE by 2 wickets|
|Feb 26||Afghanistan bt. Scotland by 1 wicket|
|Feb 26||Sri Lanka bt. Bangladesh by 92 runs|
|Feb 27||South Africa bt. West Indies by 257 runs|
|Feb 28||New Zealand bt. Australia by 1 wicket|
|Feb 28||India bt. UAE by 9 wickets|
|Mar 1||Sri Lanka bt. England by 9 wickets|
|Mar 1||Pakistan bt. Zimbabwe by 20 runs|
|Mar 3||South Africa bt. Ireland by 201 runs|
|Mar 4||Australia bt. Afghanistan by 275 runs|
|Mar 4||Pakistan bt. UAE by 129 runs|
|Mar 5||Bangladesh bt. Scotland by 6 wickets|
|Mar 6||India bt. West Indies by 4 wickets|
|Mar 7||Pakistan bt. South Africa by 29 runs|
|Mar 7||Ireland bt. Zimbabwe by 5 runs|
|Mar 8||Australia bt. Sri Lanka by 64 runs|
|Mar 8||New Zealand bt. Afghanistan by 6 wickets|
|Mar 9||Bangladesh bt. England by 15 runs|
|Mar 10||India bt. Ireland by 8 wickets|
|Mar 11||Sri Lanka bt. Scotland by 148 runs|
|Mar 12||South Africa bt. UAE by 146 runs|
|Mar 13||New Zealand bt. Bangladesh by 3 wickets|
|Mar 13||England bt. Afghanistan by 9 wickets|
|Mar 14||Australia bt. Scotland by 7 wickets|
|Mar 14||India bt. Zimbabwe by 6 wickets|
|Mar 15||West Indies bt. UAE by 6 wickets|
|Mar 15||Pakistan bt. Ireland by 7 wickets|
|The Gabba, Brisbane||42,000||3|
|Bellerive Oval, Hobart||20,000||3|
|Manuka Oval, Canberra||14,000||3|
|Eden Park, Auckland||46,000||4|
|Hagley Oval, Christchurch||20,000||3|
|McLean Park, Napier||20,000||3|
|Seddon Park, Hamilton||12,000||3|
|University Oval, Dunedin||6,000||3|
|Saxton Oval, Nelson||5,000||3|
Going into the 2015 CWC, Australia is the highest ranked ODI team. But that’s not the only factor which gives them the best chance of winning the World Cup this time. Home advantage will play a big part too. For any team to defeat Australia in Australia, they will have to play exceptionally well. At least 7 of their batsman can win a game alone on any given day, so they are really spoiled for choice. They also bat very deep, which is another great advantage. Besides, with 3 world-class pace bowlers, they are going to be a formidable attack on the Australian bouncy wickets. Last but not the least, their fielding has always been top-notch, which virtually adds 20 – 30 runs to their total in most games. In short, among all the teams, Australia has the best shot at lifting the trophy.
Potential Match Winners: Michael Clarke, George Bailey, Aaron Finch, Steve Smith, David Warner, Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc.
Best WC Performances: Champions – 1987, 1999, 2003, 2007.
Don’t be fooled by South Africa’s past record at WCs. If it was high time that one team ought to win the CWC for the first time, it is the African giants. And then, does the name AB de Villiers ring a bell? He is one guy that can murder any attack. There are a few others too who can spring a surprise on their day. They seem to be doing good in the bowling department too, with a decent mix of pace and spin. About their fielding, need I say anything? Spectacular, would be the right word. Lastly, they, like Australia, would relish the extra bounce that the pitches in these parts of the world have on offer. All in all, the 2015 CWC might just be the one where they go that extra mile as compared to previous editions. Yeah, they look like the most probable team besides the Aussies that can lift the cup on March 29.
Potential Match Winners: AB de Villiers, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis, JP Duminy, Dale Steyn.
Best WC Performances: SF – 1992, 1999, 2007.
Current WC holders India have the advantage of playing in Australia for 3 months preceding the WC. So, it’s safe to say that they would be accustomed to the conditions the best, besides the host nations. Ranked number 2 in ODIs, it’s common belief that India are poor travelers. But that might be true as far as tests are concerned. Drape them in the blue colors, and they look like a different unit altogether. Not many from the last WC’s winning team have survived to make it to this edition, and they have been pretty brave in leaving out the likes of Yuvraj, Sehwag, Zaheer, and Gambhir. But there is enough experience and youth in the current lot to take this team through. Dhoni would love to add another WC to his cabinet, but the weak link in this team is obviously their bowling. They don’t seem likely to be able to put much pressure on top-class batting teams, and their batsmen would have to score heavily to get them through most games. The fielding is so-so, but vastly improved over the past decade or so. Safe to say, they come third in this list, and can win only if they play consistently good cricket throughout the course of the tournament.
Potential Match Winners: Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma.
Best WC Performances: Champions – 1983, 2011.
Make no mistake, Sri Lanka have not come here simply to make up the numbers. This team surely has it in them to win their second WC. But again, their problem over the months has been consistency, and you never know which team is gonna turn up on the day. These guys are one of the most experienced units in the fray, and those staring at retirement would want to go out on a high. Batting is a good mix of experience and hard-hitters. The bowling looks pretty decent, with Malinga, always looking to crush some toes with his yorkers, having good support from the other lot. Sri Lanka’s fielding has mostly been okay, not so great but not too bad either. Bottom line is, they will have to play well consistently to progress high, something which they seem to lack in recent times.
Potential Match Winners: Tillakaratne Dilshan, Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Angelo Mathews, Lasith Malinga.
Best WC Performances: Champions – 1996.
This is another team that has never won the CWC ever, and have thrice come as close as 1-win away from the trophy. They’d surely want to make 2015 their year, especially for their fans back home; and they do have the capability. But with Kevin Pietersen gone and Stokes surprisingly not selected, they have their work cut out. England also has a new captain in Morgan, and whether the team is settled under his leadership is a question only they can answer. The bowling looks good though, with 2 good pacers and a decent spinner in their ranks. The fielding is not a matter of concern, and their overall results will again boil down to consistent, positive cricket. The Australian and New Zealand pitches too would be quite to their liking.
Potential Match Winners: Eoin Morgan, James Anderson, Ian Bell, Steven Finn, Joe Root.
Best WC Performances: Runners-up – 1979, 1987, 1992.
The Kiwis are the other team besides Australia who will enjoy some home advantage, which is a big enough factor in this part of the world. The starting 11 would be a decent lot, but their bench strength is nothing to write about. The batting looks quite strong, with more than a couple of big-hitters in their ranks. The bowling seems okayish, and Vettori would love to end his career with the WC in his hands. New Zealand have always been a good fielding side, which is one area where they will score over many other teams. Also, they play entertaining cricket, but that’s not necessarily something that can win one the cup, right? Remember, they are 6-time semi-finalists! Frustrating, to say the least.
Potential Match Winners: Brendon McCullum, Kane Williamson, Corey Anderson, Ross Taylor, Kyle Mills.
Best WC Performances: SF – 1975, 1979, 1992, 1999, 2007, 2011.
Pakistan is another team that plays excellent cricket at home but travels poorly. Also, you never know which Pakistani side will turn up on the given day. It’s no rocket science that if they play up to their potential, they can beat any side in the world. One drawback is that they haven’t been to Australia in 5 years, so getting used to the conditions would be difficult. Misbah and Afridi will take one last shot at the cup, and they would give it their all. The batting isn’t anything great to talk about, but the bowling looks decent, though they would sorely miss the services of the magician Ajmal. In his absence, Pakistan’s chances of winning the cup may have reduced by at least 20%. They aren’t the best fielding unit either, but don’t write them off just yet. On their day, there isn’t much that they can do wrong.
Potential Match Winners: Misbah-ul-Haq, Shahid Afridi, Umar Akmal, Younis Khan, Wahab Riaz.
Best WC Performances: Champions – 1992.
Well, we always think about the dream team of the ’80s when talking about the Windies. After that, they’ve just become the punching bag for all the other teams. Though, a particular Chris Gayle would beg to differ. They would have done well with the services of Bravo and Pollard, and one can’t help but think that their exclusion has more to do with off-field issues with the WI board than pure cricketing skills. Anyway, they will have to make do with whom they’ve brought along now, and they do have a few match-winners on board. Batting would be their strength when compared to bowling, and they are a pretty decent fielding unit too. They might make it to the knockout, but not much further after that. But you never know, cricket is a funny game after all!
Potential Match Winners: Chris Gayle, Kemar Roach, Darren Sammy, Marlon Samuels, Dwayne Smith.
Best WC Performances: Champions – 1975, 1979.
The other teams in the tournament are Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Ireland, Afghanistan, Scotland, and UAE. Let’s not jump the gun and assume that they are here simply to fill up both the groups. All these teams would be eager to prove and point and rub shoulders with the big boys. Easier said than done! Though, teams like Bangladesh and Zimbabwe can spring a surprise or two, and upset the group standings. We have seen this happen in the past too. The big guns might not want to go too easy with these teams, and will want to make sure that they beat them comprehensively and extract full points.
Potential Match Winners: Dawlat Zadran, Shapoor Zadran, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Preston Mommsen, William Porterfield, Mohammad Tauqir, Elton Chigumbura.
Best WC Performances: Bangladesh (Super 8 – 2007), Zimbabwe (Super 6 – 1999, 2003), Ireland (Super 8 – 2007), Afghanistan (First WC), Scotland (Group Stage – 1999, 2007), UAE (Group stage – 1996).
Well-done to the Aussies. They were definitely the team to beat. Deserved winners, who arguably had no weakness in their ranks, be it bowling, batting, fielding, or captaincy.
That’s all for this edition. See you in England in 4 years time!