The ICC Cricket World Cup 2003 can be termed as a World Cup of upsets as it saw teams like Zimbabwe and Kenya making it to the Super Six stage while the likes of South Africa, West Indies, England and Pakistan were out of the tournament in the group stage itself.
On this day, March 20, 2003, India faced Kenya in the semi-final of the World Cup. India had won the toss and chose to bat first. The wicket was damp and the outfield soggy because of the rain prior to the match. It wasn’t a great wicket to bat and India, having batted first, put on 270 runs in 50 overs.
Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly led from the front with a brilliant hundred and became the first Indian to cross the three-figure mark in a World Cup knockout match. He remained unbeaten at 111 and played well in the Durban wicket, which wasn’t the easiest of tracks. India went on to win the match by 91 runs as Kenya were bundled out for 179 runs.
India set up a much-awaited final against Australia in the 2003 World Cup as it ended the Kenyan dream, brushing aside the minnows in a comprehensive 91-run semi-final triumph at Kingsmead, Durban
The Indian skipper began in circumspect fashion. Once he got set, however, there were few problems for the Indian captain. The advantage of being able to come down the wicket and loft the ball effortlessly helped Ganguly keep the run rate up at a healthy level.
In his unbeaten knock of 111 (114 balls) Ganguly smote five boundaries and five cracking sixes – one of which went clean out of the ground. The spinners and pacemen alike came in for the treatment as the smile reappeared on Ganguly's face. The left-hander's shot selection was truly amazing and became the first Indian to cross the three-figure mark in a World Cup knockout match.
10 S TENDULKAR
9 Y SINGH/ V KOHLI
6 S GANGULY / R Sharma
5 S DHAWAN
126 H Amla
143 V Kohli
184 Ab de Villiers
188 R Sharma
206 S Tendulkar
218 SOURAV GANGULY
Hundred for India in ICC WC Knockouts
Sourav Ganguly, 2003*
Rohit Sharma, 2015