Record scores, sixes and a double century highlight Canberra's cricket World Cup contribution

Record scores, monster sixes and a historic double century were among the highlights of Canberra's involvement in the Cricket World Cup.

More than 25,000 people attended the three games at Manuka Oval, finishing with South Africa's 201-run win against Ireland on Tuesday night.

South Africa's Faf du Plessis (R) and Hashim Amla (L) both reached centuries at Maunka Oval.
South Africa's Faf du Plessis (R) and Hashim Amla (L) both reached centuries at Maunka Oval. Photo: Peter Parks

It concluded Canberra's biggest summer of cricket, which started with November's one-day international between Australia and South Africa, the annual Prime Minister's XI game and the Big Bash League final.

The ACT government paid $2.5 million for the right to be a host city for the World Cup jointly held in Australia and New Zealand, generating exposure to a potential television audience of more than one billion people.

Chris Gayle's double century was one of the highlights of the cricket World Cup games at Manuka Oval.
Chris Gayle's double century was one of the highlights of the cricket World Cup games at Manuka Oval. Photo: Melissa Adams

It was a carnival atmosphere for Canberra's opening game when a sold-out crowd of close to 11,000 watched Bangladesh beat Afghanistan by 105 runs.

The only downside was a disappointing crowd of just over 5500 to see West Indies batsman Chris Gayle belt a record 215, the largest ever individual score in the World Cup, in a 73-run win against Zimbabwe.


Gayle also equalled the world record for the most sixes in a one-day international with 16.

All up, Canberra fans witnessed the ball fly over the boundary rope 42 times across the three games, more than 1700 runs were scored at a run rate of 6.06 per over and Gayle, teammate Marlon Samuels and South Africans Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis all made centuries.

Cricket ACT chairman Ian McNamee said the high scores and the feedback from the visiting teams boded well for Canberra to host more international games in the future.

"Canberra was on view to the whole world and the people of Canberra and the surrounding region have shown their appetite for elite cricket," McNamee said.

"Having been involved in discussions with representatives of the various teams, they were very complimentary of Manuka Oval, not only the ground and the lights, but just the atmosphere of the venue. They very much likened it to some of the grounds in England.

"We've shown with all these games that we can host international cricket.

"The first match under lights was 26 months ago, so in a little over two years, look at the content, and with the exception of that one game, we've had sell-out crowds every game.

"That's just a further endorsement and helps our case with future games that may be coming to Canberra."

ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr echoed those sentiments, but admitted the low crowd for the West Indies v Zimbabwe game may have been due to an over abundance of cricket.

"This has been the biggest summer of cricket Canberra has seen, so it's a nice problem to have rather than a famine," Barr said.

"A feast of cricket is a good thing.

"The feedback has been very positive and it gives us confidence to bring other events in the future."

Cricket will now make way at Manuka Oval for the AFL ahead of the NAB Challenge pre-season game between the GWS Giants and the Sydney Swans on March 22.

Canberra World Cup Wash Up

Feb 18: Bangladesh 267 bt Afghanistan 162 by 105 runs.

Feb 24: West Indies 2-372 bt Zimbabwe 289 by 73 runs (D/L method).

March 3: South Africa 4-411 bt Ireland 210 by 201 runs.

Total crowd: 25,347

Total runs: 1711

Average run rate: 6.06 per over

Number of sixes: 42

Highest individual score: Chris Gayle: 215 from 147 balls.

Best bowling figures: Kyle Abbott: 8-0-21-4

Centuries: Four: Chris Gayle, Marlon Samuels, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis.