Sri Lanka’s 1996 World Cup Final victory will surely go down in history as one of the greatest underdog-achievements in cricket, or any sport for that matter. Considered an outside chance leading into the tournament, Sri Lanka courageously took on a world beating Australian team with the kind of cajones not seen since Al Pacino’s rendition of Tony Montana in Scarface.
You can understand if the memory continues to linger in the mind of every Sri Lankan supporter, local or abroad. In my hometown of Melbourne, a city with a huge Sri Lankan community, the 1996 dream is ever present.
Hop in the time machine, let’s go back.
Having snuck into the TV room in the wee-hours of a winters morning, I watched the Sri Lankan innings in darkness. For the last 10 overs of the World Cup Final I cowered, cried and prayed (to god-Warne of course) for some sort of miracle to swing things back in the Aussies favour. Unlike so many other times, the miracle never came. It was my first brush with sporting mortality, for this I am grateful. Well done Sri Lanka. Having visited the country just months ago it is clear how passionate the people are about cricket. All the best in the coming weeks and thanks for the memories.
Peace in cricket and godspeed.