Blasts from the past: Gibbs ‘drops the World Cup’

Sport

Blasts from the past: Gibbs ‘drops the World Cup’

Journalist

Today in SA sports history: June 13
1999 — Australia head to Headingley in Leeds desperately needing to beat South Africa in their final Super Six match to stay in the World Cup. Having lost to New Zealand and Pakistan early in the tournament, they had no more breathing room. Herschelle Gibbs scored 101 and Daryll Cullinan 50 as SA reached 271/7 in their 50 overs. SA are in control when skipper Steve Waugh joins Ricky Ponting with Australia on 48/3. But they stand firm and push the score to 152/3 in the 31st over. Lance Klusener is bowling, and as he delivers the last ball of that over, Waugh gets an inside edge and the ball flies to Gibbs at midwicket. Gibbs, instead of taking an easy catch, tries to backflip the ball in an elaborate show-off manoeuvre and drops it. Waugh, on 56 at the time, goes onto score an unbeaten 120 and lead Australia to victory by five wickets. A tale emerged afterwards that after Gibbs spilled the ball, Waugh said to him: “You’ve just dropped the World Cup, son.” Waugh admitted later he had made no such comment, but added he liked the story. Anyway, the results meant Australia and South Africa would meet in the semifinals four days later.
2015 — Wayde van Niekerk breaks his own South African 400m record as he wins the Diamond League race in New York in 44.24sec, a year after he'd lowered the mark to 44.38.

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