With the World XI tour to Pakistan just a few days away from now, we have decided to take a major flashback to when the World XI played their last series. That was against Australia, in the winter of 2005.
There is a contrasting difference between the purpose behind sending the World XI to Australia back in 2005, and sending a World XI to Pakistan this year.
The World XI tour to Australia was to combine all the world-class players at that time to overcome the dominant Australian XI led by Ricky Ponting.
On the other hand, the motive of the World XI’s tour to Pakistan is to promote a message of peace in the whole world, and to give an evidence to the fact that Pakistan is safe for international cricket.
As we come back to the World XI tour of Australia, there were 3 ODIs and 1 Test, with all of them having international status.
Five players from South Africa, three each from England, and two each from India, Sri Lanka, and West Indies were joined by one player from New Zealand to form part of the lucrative squad.
However, the Australian team continued their dominance over world cricket despite the World XI stars. In the 1st ODI, the dominant top 3 of Australia conquered the World XI bowlers, before Vettori and Muralitharan struck.
Symonds and Hussey finished the innings off, before McGrath, Lee and Bracken dismissed the top batters of the opposition.
Only Sangakkara and Flintoff could provide substantial resistance, before Watson’s 3-for ensured a comfortable victory for Australia.
In the 2nd ODI, Adam Gilchrist’s blazing hundred was accompanied by solid performances from the top 4 to give Australia a daunting total of 328.
In response, Chris Gayle and Kumar Sangakkara led World XI’s fightback, but the scoreboard pressure and good bowling from Bracken ensured Australia to a 55-run win.
In the 3rd and final ODI, Gilchrist and Ponting gave the hosts a brilliant start, which was carried on by Hussey and Watson, as Australia finished on a commanding 293.
It was another disappointing outing for the World XI batters, as only Sehwag and Flintoff could score more than 20 runs. Shane Watson and Lee picked up 4 wickets apiece, as Australia won by a massive 156 runs.
The last game on the tour was a Test match, which was also the first-ever Test played by a World XI. Australia’s Matthew Hayden and Adam Gilchrist scored a century and 94 respectively, as Australia made 345 in the 1st innings.
Virender Sehwag, Jacques Kallis and Andrew Flintoff scored 76, 44 and 35 respectively, as none of the other batters scored more than 12 runs.
Ricky Ponting and Matthew Hayden carried on after the lead of 155 runs, but a middle-order collapse saw Australia being bowled out for 199.
The target was set for the World XI team, 355 runs, but they had a disastrous start. The top 3 did bulk of the scoring with 23, 36 and 39, but Stuart MacGill ran through the lower-order to dismiss World XI for 144 and hand Australia victory by 210 runs.
World XI lost all their games when they last played in a series back in 2005.
However, with a lot of world-class names included in the squad to tour Pakistan, it will be very interesting to see if the Champions Trophy 2017 winners can continue their winning streak.