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Last Updated:  Friday, 21 March, 2003, 15:29 GMT
World Cup Allstar XI
By Martin Gough

BBC Sport selects its team of the tournament.

Batsmen

Sachin Tendulkar (Ind)

TENDULKAR AT CWC 2003
Tendulkar has amassed a record 669 runs in this tournament
Innings: 10
Runs: 669
Highest: 152 v Namibia
Average: 66.90
Strike rate: 89.31
India's star attraction has developed a propensity to get out just short of three figures in the last two months.

He has fallen on four occasions with his total over 80 but still managed to take his tournament aggregate to a record 669 ahead of Sunday's final.

Tendulkar's innings of 97 against arch-rivals Pakistan was described by several on-lookers as his best ever, even though severe cramps left him unable to walk.

Herschelle Gibbs (SA)

If only Gibbs had let his bat do the talking, he would have been utterly blameless for South Africa's miserable World Cup performance.

He was one of few bright points for the co-hosts, who crashed out after the first round, smashing 143 in a losing effort against New Zealand and 73 in that heart-breaking tie with Sri Lanka.

But his comments comparing the captaincies of Shaun Pollock and Hansie Cronje were less than welcome, exposing the weak links in the South African camp.

Marvan Atapattu (SL)

While opening partner Sanath Jayasuriya took the plaudits, the less demonstrative Atapattu came through when it counted, scoring two crucial centuries.

His first, a marvellous 124 at Kingsmead, set group rivals South Africa an ultimately impossible target.

And an unbeaten 103 in East London took the 1996 champions out of reach of Zimbabwe, securing Sri Lanka a semi-final spot in the process.

Stephen Fleming (NZ)

Fleming gave little heed to Shaun Pollock's vaunted status as a bowler in a crucial group match at the Wanderers, going down the track to the South Africa captain as if he were a part-time trundler.

It was a rare starring role for a skipper who is usually happy to take a back seat.

But his dismissal for 48 against Australia ended hopes of an upset for their trans-Tasman rivals, sparking a lower-order collapse that ended the Kiwis' World Cup campaign.

Sourav Ganguly (Ind, capt)

The India captain's three centuries have came against non Test-playing nations.

But the second, an unbeaten 107 at Newlands, rescued his side from what could have been an ignominious defeat to Kenya.

It is his leadership that has gained most acclaim, however, lifting a side from a record low 125 all out against Australia to a second meeting with the current champions in the final.

Ganguly's decision to drop himself down the batting order brought together an opening pair in Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag that has dominated the tournament.

Andrew Symonds (Aus)

SYMONDS: INNINGS BY INNINGS
Symonds has come of age for Australia
143 not out v Pakistan
59 v Namibia
33 not out v Kenya
91 not out v Sri Lanka
Alongside Andy Bichel, Symonds has been a crucial cog in Australia's bid for back-to-back World Cup titles, saving face when batting collapses threaten.

At 86 for four in their opening match against Pakistan, Australia's tournament was about to come off the rails until Symonds, only playing because of Michael Bevan's injury and Darren Lehmann's ban, hit an unbeaten 143.

And Symonds proved that he was not all booming cover-drives by compiling a rearguard 91 against Sri Lanka in the semi-final, milking runs around the field to carry Australia from the depths of 51 for three.


Wicket-keeper

Adam Gilchrist (Aus)

The Australia opener has been under-par in this tournament but still stands fifth in the list of run-scorers going into the final after several biffing innings.

A running mix-up in the Super Six win over Sri Lanka denied him any chance of reaching three figures but it was enough to ensure a dominating total in that match.

He has clung onto the edges created by Australia's much-feared pace corps to secure a tournament-leading 20 catches, including a World Cup-record six against Namibia.


Spin bowler

Muttiah Muralitharan (SL)

The unorthodox off-spinner has had a low-profile tournament compared to surprise talents like Kenya's Collins Obuya and Brad Hogg of Australia, but he has still managed 17 wickets.

Muralitharan's greatest ability, though, has been to cut 10 overs out of the heart of any opponent's innings, yielding on average just 36 runs.

Despite the lack of victims, spells of one for 26 against West Indies and one for 22 against Zimbabwe were crucial to Sri Lanka's continued campaign.


Pace bowlers

Brett Lee (Aus)

Nicknamed "Bing" after a discount store in Australia, Lee has added economy to his portfolio.

But that new string to his bow has done nothing to lessen the fear felt by batsmen facing one of the world's fastest bowlers.

Forced into service as an opening bowler only at the beginning of this year, the experience proved vital following Jason Gillespie's tournament-ending Achilles tendon injury.

Lee responded with terrifyingly short opening bursts followed by second spells that combined good length and swing to devastating effect - the two combining for 20 wickets going into the final.

VAAS: HIS RECORD HAUL
Vaas has prospered in South African conditions
0/22 v New Zealand
6/25 v Bangladesh
3/15 v Canada
3/41 v Kenya
4/22 v West Indies
0/33 v South Africa
0/59 v Australia
2/34 v India
2/46 v Zimbabwe
3/34 v Australia
Chaminda Vaas (SL)

Sri Lanka's sultan of swing has thrived in South African conditions, aggregating a World Cup record 23 wickets.

He was ruthless against Bangladesh, recording just the third ever World Cup hat-trick off the first three balls of the match.

And in a do-or-die encounter, West Indies were utterly bamboozled under the Newlands floodlights as Vaas bagged four for 22.

Zaheer Khan (Ind)

Never before has India had a pace attack to compare with the current trio - and Zaheer has been its leader during this tournament.

Ashish Nehra may have grabbed the headlines with his outstanding six for 23 against England, but his fellow left-armer has been Mr Consistency, taking at least two wickets in all but two matches.

His key contribution was in the Super Six victory over New Zealand, Craig McMillan and Nathan Astle both succumbing in the first over of the match as Zaheer compiled figures of four for 42.




SEE ALSO
World Cup flopstars
21 Mar 03 |  World Cup


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