The decade is about to be over. A decade full of records, full of controversies. 3 World Cups, 4 World T20s, 2 Champions Trophy and the beginning of the first Test championship. It is hard to pick 10 most important cricketing moments of the decade but we manage to pick few and they are mainly based on history makers.
2010 – First ODI Double Hundred
February 24: History was created in Gwalior. After 2961 ODIs, Sachin Tendulkar of India became the first man to score the double hundred in ODIs. Tendulkar scored 200* in the 50th over of the innings against South Africa. Several players in the past came close to breaking the barrier of 200 runs in an ODI but none deserves the accolade as much as Sachin Tendulkar, who scored more runs, hundreds, the fifties in ODIs. Cricinfo's server crashed after 45 million page views that particular day. Since then 7 more double hundreds have been scored, 3 alone by Rohit Sharma.
2011 – Dhoni finishes off in style
April 2: A World Cup Title after 28 years for India, when they made history at Wankhede. India became the first team to win the World Cup at home. The hero of the World Cup, Yuvraj Singh was struggling with cancer during the tournament yet gave his best performance and won the 'Player of the Tournament award'. Tendulkar's dream of winning the World Cup finally achieved when MS Dhoni hit the six to win the title. The whole India celebrated, came on the roads of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, etc with drums and DJs.
2012 – Heartbreak for Tigers in Asia Cup final
March 22: This was a fantastic tournament for Bangladesh as they played some of their best cricket. Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim and Tamim Iqbal were all stars and looking to take the cricketing world by storm as they defeated a strong India outfit – back then world champions – along with an experienced Sri Lanka team and an enigmatic Pakistan team. In the final, they would once again face Pakistan and in a tight contest, they needed just nine runs off six balls with Mahmudullah in strike and an inexperienced Aizaz Cheema bowling. However, as fate would have it, Bangaldesh came agonisingly close but fell two runs short as the whole of Bangladesh including the players wept in agony and heartbreak. This would however be an important chapter in the building of Bangladesh's big five – Shakib, Tamim, Mushfiq, Mahmudullah and Mashrafe bin Mortaza.
2013 – Tendulkar retired
November 16: The day when India wept. The last day of Sachin Tendulkar's illustrative career. Playing in hometown, Tendulkar scored 74 in his last test innings. The farewell speech was one of the best speech by a cricketer who brought tears in the eyes of everyone present in the stadium. And as if that was not enough to moist the eyes of his fans, Tendulkar walked back to the pitch for one last time to pay his respect, made it more memorable. Tendulkar retired with the most number of Tests, ODIs, Runs, Hundreds and many other several records.
2014 – Philip Hughes' Death
November 25-27: When the whole cricketing world came together. On November 25, Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes was hit by a bouncer in a domestic game and was air-lifted to a hospital. Fans across the globe prayed for his speedy recovery, but Hughes succumed to injury on November 27. The Test match in Sharjah between Pakistan and New Zealand was suspended for a day. Boards, cricketers, and fans started trending #PutOutYourBats as a tribute for Phillip Hughes all over the social media.
2015 – The First Day-Night Test
November 27: Exactly after a year of Phillip Hughes' death, the first-day night test was played at Adelaide Oval between Australia and New Zealand. Australians are known for bringing new ideas and changes to the game to keep it interesting for the fans. They started the concept of Day-night cricket along with colour kits, brought snickometer, Hotspot, and DRS into the game and now the pink ball test to bring more crowds to the stadium for test matches. Before the decade got over, India too made their pink-ball Test match debut. A welcome change to keep the test matches interesting even if they are getting over in less than 5 days.
2016 – Caribbean Music in India
April 3: West Indies was the first team to win the World Cup twice (in 1975 & 1979) and in 2016 they became the first team to win the World T20 cup twice. Braithwaite's 4 consecutive sixes to in the final over to win the title was the most majestic moment of the World Cup. Samuels, like in 2012, played another crucial knock in the finals. It was a great year for West Indies cricket as they not only won the WT20 in males cricket but also of female cricket along with U-19 World Cup.
2017 – Pakistan's Champions Trophy
June 18: Pakistan qualified as the last team in the Champions Trophy. The most unpredictable team of every generation somehow manages to win the spot of final against India at Lord's. An Indian-Pakistan contest is always known as the 'mother of all battles' and if its a tournament final then nothing like that. On that sunny day, except the toss, everything went in Pakistan's favour. Fakhar Zaman nicked a ball to the keeper off Bumrah when he was at just 3 but it was found that the ball was a no-ball. Riding on luck, Zaman thrashed Indian bowlers all over the park. He made 114 and added 128 runs for the 1st wicket which set up the game for Pakistan. Chasing 339, India's top order was derailed by Mohammad Amir. He picked the top scorers of Indian batting line up of the tournament in the span of 4 overs. With Rohit, Kohli, and Dhawan back in the dressing room with just 33 onboard, the match was over much earlier than expected. Pakistan won the tournament despite being the last team to qualify is not surprising for cricket fans because Pakistan's cricket is full of uncertainties.
2018 – The Sandpaper Gate
March 24: As if match-fixing was not enough to destroy the reputation of the game, the best players of the game involved in the greatest controversy of the decade. Steve Smith, David Warner, and Cameron Bancroft were found tampering with the ball with sandpaper (which cricketers generally use to maintain their bats) in the third test against South Africa in Capetown. Smith, who was also the captain, later admitted that he knew the plans of changing the condition of the ball. The vice-captain David Warner also accepted the charges by ICC. Australian Cricket Board later banned all three players from International cricket for a year. In the absence of Smith, Tim Paine got the responsibility to lead the Australian team.
2019 – England finally winning the World Cup
July 14: The Greatest Match of ODI History. A nail-biting finish in World Cup final. A tie followed by a super over, followed by another tie but England won the title because of boundary rule. Yes, a World Cup final was decided by a rule which says whichever team hits more boundaries in the final will win the match in case of a tie in super over. England had been playing the most exciting and aggressive form of cricket since its early exit from World Cup 2015. This is certainly England's best ODI team of all time. After losing the previous three World Cup finals, they finally overcome the tag of chokers in World Cup finals. A World Cup win for the creator of the game.