ODI cricket also known as One-day international is a 50 over format. This format was introduced in 1971 after the first three days of a Test match between England and Australia was rained-off. Taking the public interest into perspective, the match officials requested the teams to play a 40 over per side match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. As a result the first ODI was played on 5th January. Australia once again emerged victorious by 5 wickets.
Back in 70s, the ODI format was a 60 over format and was also played in traditional white clothing. It was only after the World Series Cricket in late 70s, the white ball, colored clothing and day night cricket became a norm. The first World Cup was played in England in the year 1975. The West Indies went on to win the inaugural edition and also defend their title in 1979. In a remarkable turn of events in 1983, Team India put an end to this amazing streak by beating the mighty Windies in the finals.
Present and Future
Ever since the advent of T20 cricket, the 50 over format has been under constant threat to hold its own. Many pundits have called for the scrapping of the format in order to push the T20 and Tests. With the format being similar to T20, the significance of ODIs is also questioned by several cricketing authorities. Many meaningless ODIs have drawn a tremendous amount of flak from the media too.
The Champions Trophy model too has lost it sheen and the governing body is almost on the verge of scrapping it. Yet, the format continues to provide some exhilarating contests. The 50 over World Cup still has a firm place in the sport and the entire cricketing fraternity is keenly looking forward to the mega event-World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in early 2015.
Blast from the Past
Over the years several cricket matches have gone down to the wire. Innumerable nail biting finishes between the evenly matched sides have booked their place firmly in the history books.
The 5th ODI between South Africa and Australia at Johannesburg in March 2006 takes the pole position. This was probably the greatest ODI every played. The match saw more than 870 runs scored in a day. After Australia posted a total of 434 runs, the Proteas chased those runs, thereby creating history in ODI cricket.
The Australian juggernaut of winning the World Cup in 2003 and 2007 without being beaten in a single match is an unparallel record. That team led by Ricky Ponting is arguably the greatest team to have played 50 over cricket.