It’s often said that a picture says a thousand words. In the case of these iconic cricket pictures, it’s more like a million.
Just when you think you’ve seen it all, a legend of the game (or sometimes a rank outsider) pulls something off you could never have predicted. England’s recent Word Cup win has proven the point quite nicely – a tournament that concluded with perhaps the most exciting and unusual final in the history of the sport.
The 2019 World Cup reignited the UK’s interest in cricket like no major tournament of the past decade. Nevertheless, England’s spectacular last-second victory will go down in history as just one of several incredible and unforgettable moments that defined the modern game.
According to Sport Photo Gallery, who sells not only cricket pictures but other sports photos all around the world, crickets pictures are becoming more popular by the day. So let’s take a look at another handful of top moments in cricket history – some of which have been immortalized in the most incredible cricket pictures:
Warne’s Ball of the Century
It was and is considered perhaps the most impressive and important delivery of all time. A single throw that completely transformed the way the world looked at both Warne himself and the art of bowling. The Daily Telegraph’s Tom Stangster explaining what happened as follows:
“After hitting an early boundary, Gatting took guard for his first ball from the young spinner. Warne began his run-up—just a few casual steps—before releasing the ball with an almighty flick of the wrist.
“The ball continued straight for three quarters of its flight, until the viciously spinning ball swerved wildly to the leg side. The ball pitched well outside the leg stump, gripping viciously, turning past Gatting’s outside edge to just clip off stump.”
The Rise of the Pink-Haired Irishman
Chalking up the fastest century in the history of World Cup cricket, club cricketer Kevin O’Brien came out of nowhere to take England completely off guard. The Irishman had previously been considered more of a novelty than a threat – not least due to his pink hair, which he had dyed in support of a charity.
James Anderson and Stuart Broad threw everything but the kitchen sink at O’Brien, who remarkably went on to strike six sixes and 13 fours. He managed to score a century in just 50 balls, bettering the prior record set by Matthew Hayden by an astonishing 16 balls.
Twenty-Two Runs off One Ball
This farcical end to a World Cup semi-final still smarts for thousands of South African cricket fans. It was a pretty controversial incident, wherein South Africa’s target was adjusted from 22 runs off 13 balls to an impossible 22 off one, following a 12-minute delay due to rain.
The often-disputed ‘lowest-scoring-over rain rules’ destroyed what had otherwise been a great game and a potentially nail-biting conclusion, sending England through to another World Cup final they were destined to lose.
Racking up an extraordinary 303 runs, seven catches and 12 wickets over eight matches at the 1983 World Cup, Kapil Dev is single-handedly credited with sparking a love affair with one-day cricket for millions of Indians. However, it was one of the most iconic catches in the history of the professional game that will be most fondly remembered from that fateful 1983 final.
“As Kapil Dev swirled and hovered, the whole of India held its breath,” commentator Henry Blofeld explained. “It was a fairly straightforward catch, but I can’t believe there was ever a more pressured one in World Cup history.”
Last but not least, one of the greatest catches of all time came from one of the most unexpected players in the game. Bermudian jail officer Dwayne Leverock – weighing in at approximately 20 stone at the time – suddenly took flight to pull off an exceptional one-handed catch, dismissing India’s Robin Uthappa and completely turning the tide of the game.
It seems Leverock was as surprised and elated as the rest of the crowd, celebrating wildly before bursting into tears and being tackled euphorically by his entire team. He’d then go on to be named Sports Personality of the Year and Athlete of the Year in his native Bermuda, while instantly adding his name to the professional cricket history books.
“People still talk about it and reminisce about the catch. I have a picture of the moment in my living room so I just glance at it and think of the memories. It feels really good,” in the words of the great man himself.