Friday 2 August 2013 

Botham Recalls 1992 World Cup Disappointment

Sir Ian Botham says he remains disappointed about England's World Cup final defeat in 1992
© Cricket World TV
 

Former England international Sir Ian Botham says that losing the 1992 World Cup final to Pakistan in Melbourne remains one of his biggest disappointments in the game.

Botham, who also played in the 1979 and 1983 events, scored 192 runs and took 16 wicket as England reached the final for the third time.

In the game itself at the Melbourne Cricket Ground - where the 2015 final will also be held - Pakistan posted 249 for six and England were bowled out for 227.

Botham, who failed to score a run and took one for 42, recalled: "It only comes round every four years so it was really disappointing not to have won in 1992 when I thought we were the best team, but we didn’t and you have to deal with that.

"It would have been a great thing to achieve in my career and I gave it a good go, and as long as you do that you can't have any regrets.
 
"My main memory is that it was a tournament we should have won. We had the rough end of the stick in the final with a couple of decisions, but having said that I still enjoyed it tremendously.
 
"It was a great tournament for the team to get to the final and for me personally, in particular the four wickets I took against Australia in Sydney, which put them out of the tournament. The crowd really wanted us to lose the final at the MCG that's for sure."

England beat South Africa by 22 runs in the semi-final but it was Pakistan's livewire fast bowler Wasim Akram who really impressed Botham at the time.

"It was in that tournament that we realised just what a special talent he was and how much trouble he was going to give us and the rest of the world in the years to come. What a player he was," he said.

In 2015, England, who have made little impression on the knockout stages of World Cups since 1992, will take on Australia, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and two qualifiers, with their opening match on 14th February against Australia.

"I think changes to the 50 overs game makes it quite hard to predict (a winner)," Botham said, looking ahead to the tournament.

"With the powerplay and field placing changes, I think teams are never out of a game until the very end and that makes for exciting cricket.
 
"In Australia and New Zealand I think England will stand a good chance. They showed how much they've improved by reaching the Champions Trophy final and they can now keep progressing in order to peak in 2015."

© Cricket World 2013