Monday 30 April 2007 

World Cup Quotes

The 2007 Cricket World Cup in quotes:

"Congrats Australia!" proclaimed the scoreboard at the Kensington Oval on April 28 after the Sri Lankan players take up the option of bad light and walk off the field to hand Australia a hat-trick of World Cup titles. The announcement, however, was premature as the players were ordered to complete the three remaining overs in the rain-shorted final in virtual darkness.

"I actually thought he (the umpire) was having a bit of a joke with us to try and stop our celebrations or something. He said 'it looks like you'll have to come back tomorrow and play three overs'. I stopped and looked at him and said 'mate, we've played the 20 overs, we've finished the game'. It was a little bit disappointing way to end a World Cup" -- Australian captain Ricky Ponting reacting to the farcical end to the tournament following his team's 53-run win.

"The umpires said we had to play three overs. We were surprised, we found out later they had got it wrong" - Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene on the confusion.

"The game was technically over because a 20-over match had been completed. It was a human error" - match referee Jeff Crowe admits the officials made the wrong call by asking the teams to play the final three overs.

"We've dominated this tournament like no team has dominated a tournament before. We've never really been tested" - Ponting on Australia's Cup campaign, in which they won all 11 of their matches convincingly.

"The last two balls landed in the right areas for me to have a go and luckily I didn't miscue either of them" -- South African batsman Herschelle Gibbs after becoming the first man to hit six sixes in an over in an international match during a group contest against the Netherlands.

"You could moan and groan and cry about it. But the only way to deal with it is to have a little laugh about it. It's happened and I can't do anything about it. In fact, it was good hitting, it was quite nice" - Dutch leg spinner Daan van Bunge about being on the receiving end of Gibbs's onslaught.

"Before the game we said let's make history today by beating South Africa. We made history, but not by beating them" - Dutch captain Luuk van Troost sees the funny side of Gibbs's record feat.

"I didn't know if anyone else had taken four. I know now I was the first person and I'm very happy. But my team lost the game" - Sri Lanka fast bowler Lasith Malinga after becoming the first man in international cricket to take four wickets in four balls in a Super Eights match against South Africa.

"There's no secret we had a few drinks ... there was water involved and a pedalo as well. But I don't think my life was in danger" - England all rounder Andrew Flintoff on his late-night drinking binge.

"I'm laughing, I think it's quite amusing. I think it's a total over-reaction. Did all the team get locked up in 2005 when they won the Ashes ... or was it alright then?" - Ian Botham on Flintoff being stripped of the vice captaincy and banned for a game after the drinking scandal.

"Our residents have had some time to save" St Kitts and Nevis Prime Minister Denzil Douglas defending the ticket prices, which started from $25 U.S., despite the per capita income in the Caribbean nation being $8,000.

"The ICC should be sued. They charge first-world prices in a third-world country. They stopped the carnival atmosphere. Cricket in the Caribbean should be fun in the sun" - Antiguan resident Alexis Jacobs.

"Muralitharan is the hardest bowler in the world to face. Much harder (than Shane Warne). He is a true great of the game. Murali just winds you up. 'Silent assassin' I call him" - England's Kevin Pietersen on Muttiah Muralitharan, who promptly dismisses him in Sri Lanka's win over England.

"It's probably just a switch inside me that gets me going. It is something that triggers inside me that makes me want to give it an extra special go" - Pietersen talks about facing his homeland South Africa. He was dismissed for just three.

"A quality team like India shouldn't be relying on Bermuda" - Bermuda skipper Irvine Romaine on how one billion Indians were praying for Bermuda to beat Bangladesh as it would help India to reach the second round. The prayers went unanswered and India were eliminated in the first round.

© Reuters 2007

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