5 Costliest Drop Catches in ODI World Cup (All Teams)

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Catches win matches! This is perhaps the most accurate proverb in the world of cricket. But even in tournaments like the World Cup, some players have fluffed simple chances, which led to unfavourable results. 

Those teams surrendered and succumbed to the momentum and eventually lost the match.

Take a look at the five costliest drop catches in ODI World Cup history. It is a story of five guilty players who dropped catches in big ODI World Cup games and how they became villains in the process.

What are the Five Costliest Drop Catches in ODI World Cup History

We will begin our list with Herschelle Gibbs dropping Steve Waugh in the 1999 ODI World Cup semi-final. We will then move on to Graham Gooch dropping Imran Khan in the 1992 ODI World Cup final.

The next three players in line are Ross Edwards of Australia, Abdul Razzaq of the West Indies, and Marlon Samuels of the West Indies.

  • Herschelle Gibbs (South Africa)
  • Graham Gooch (England)
  • Ross Edwards (Australia)
  • Abdul Razzaq (Pakistan)
  • Marlon Samuels (West Indies)

Analysis of Costliest Drop Catchees in ODI World Cup 

Here, we will explore how the dropped catch impacted the game, rather than looking at how the catch was dropped. Let’s start with Gibbs’ catch drop, as it tops our list of costliest drop catches in ODI World Cup history. 

Herschelle Gibbs (1999 ODI World Cup):

During the 1999 ODI World Cup, South Africa’s Herschelle Gibbs was guilty of dropping the catch of then-Aussie skipper Steve Waugh.

  • South Africa batted first and posted a score of 271/7. In reply, Australia was reduced to 3/48. That was when skipper Steve Waugh walked in and lobbed a simple catch to Gibbs, who dropped the catch in order to celebrate early.
  • Later, Waugh would say to Gibbs, “You have not dropped a catch, but the World Cup trophy.”
  • As it turned out, Waugh bounced back, scored a century, and took Australia home.

Graham Gooch (1992 ODI World Cup):

The England skipper did something unpardonable in the 1992 ODI World Cup final.

  • He spilled an easy chance on his opposite counterpart, Pakistan’s Imran Khan.
  • Pakistan had batted first, and Khan had promoted himself to three. He pushed an easy catch at Gooch, who just couldn’t hold on to that chance.
  • This would come back and haunt England in the match, as Khan would recover from the stutter and manage to score 72 off 110 balls.
  • This score would push the final total to 249/6 in the allotted 50 overs.
  • In reply, England were all out for 227, losing the final and the World Cup trophy.

Ross Edwards (1975 ODI World Cup):

It was the final match of the 1975 ODI World Cup—the inaugural edition. Australia was up against the West Indies.

  • The West Indies were batting first and were left stuttering at 50/3. Here walked in skipper Clive Lloyd, who made an easy catch at mid-wicket. Unfortunately for Australia, Ross Edwards dropped it, and Australia paid a heavy price for it.
  • Lloyd would go on to slam a century as the West Indies set a target of 291.
  • In reply, Australia were all out for 274, falling short by 17 runs.

Abdul Razzaq (2003 ODI World Cup):

In this clash between arch-rivals in Centurion, India fielded first as Pakistan set a target of 273/7, with opener Saeed Anwar (101) scoring a hundred.

  • In reply, India were in hot pursuit as Sachin Tendulkar scored a fifty. But they had lost two quick wickets and were wobbling at 57/2.
  • At this stage, Abdul Razzaq spilled Tendulkar’s catch at mid-off, leaving the bowler, Wasim Akram, miffed.
  • As expected by Pakistani fans, Tendulkar didn’t look back and smashed 98 runs, which would prove enough as India would beat Pakistan by five wickets.

Marlon Samuels (2015 ODI World Cup):

The 2015 World Cup was won by Australia, but New Zealand won hearts. They played every match with flair and would go on to lose the only match, which was the final.

  • Alongside skipper Brandon McCullum, Martin Guptill was the guiding light for the Kiwi batting line-up.
  • Coming back to the incident, Samuels was guilty of dropping this dangerman during the World Cup Quarter-Final.
  • Samuels dropped an easy catch, and Guptill would go on to smash a double hundred, knocking the West Indies out in the process.

Final Thoughts on Costliest Drop Catches in ODI World Cup

Dropping catches is perhaps the most costly mistake a player can make.

Nowadays, cricket has evolved, and the batters are at the forefront of it.

Most of the time, they are playing fearless cricket, and a huge disadvantage of that philosophy is simple chances like easy, unworthy catches.

Champion teams don’t want to give the opposition chances and usually hold on to their catches because they know dropping a catch can be fatal, especially in knockout games.

FAQ about Drop Catches in ODI World Cup

1. Which is the most expensive catch drop in cricket history?

Herschelle Gibbs dropping Steve Waugh in the 1999 ODI World Cup was perhaps the most publicized catch drop.

2. Who has dropped the most catches in the history of cricket?

Pakistan’s Umar Gul among his 14 catches, he has spilled 11.

3. Which is the best fielding unit in the ODI World Cup?

Teams like Australia, England, and India are some of the best fielding units.