SL inherit SA's 'chokers' tag

2012-10-08 20:05

Colombo - South Africa's inability to win a major tournament despite having teams packed with talent has long earned them the tag of international cricket's major "chokers".

But after Sri Lanka's fourth successive loss in a World Cup final on Sunday, the African nation may believe that their Asian counterparts have now inherited the dubious title.

The island nation, who won the 1996 50-over World Cup, lost the 2007 and 2011 World Cup finals in the same format and the Twenty20 final to Pakistan in 2009.

Mahela Jayawardene and his men went into Sunday's match knowing full well it was their best chance of overcoming the disappointments, playing in familiar conditions on home soil and with the support of a packed stadium.

They started brightly, cheaply dismissing the dangerous Chris Gayle, who had been touted as the man standing between Sri Lanka and the cup, and conceding just one boundary in the first 11 overs of the West Indies innings.

But as the sixes began to fly off Marlon Samuels's thick blade in the next few overs, Sri Lanka lost the plot.

Jayawardene, involved in all four final defeats, watched helplessly as the momentum shifted in his opponents' favour and Sri Lanka never recovered.

"It was one of those days when the momentum shifted and it was pretty tough to get back in it again," the captain lamented.

Chasing a modest target of 138, the batsmen lacked self-belief and were shot out for 101 in under 19 overs, with just three of them reaching double figures as they crumbled under pressure.

The Sri Lankan crowd, who had come to celebrate a famous win, instead had to watch the West Indies players go wild with the "Gangnam Style" dance and Gayle doing a perfect imitation of the horse-riding dance made famous by South Korean singer Psy.

At the start of the tournament, the Sri Lankan captain had said he would gladly take a loss in the final rather than bow out in the initial stages.

But he was not so sure after going through the pain of defeat.

Jayawardene later announced his decision to give up the captaincy in the shortest format of the game.

"It hurts a lot, because you want to do something special, not just personally, but for the public as well," the stylish right-handed batsman told reporters.

"We've been playing really good cricket but we haven't been able to cross that hurdle. So it hurts as a player, as a cricketer, as an individual.

"But we just need to move on, try, and see how well we can get over this and get back on and keep fighting again."


  • lodewyk.fred - 2012-10-08 20:16

    I seriously doubt if any team in any sport in the world can share that tag with our chockers. At least Sri Lanka can write a World Cup behind their name.

      jo.barton.92 - 2012-10-08 22:04

      Not only did they win 1 world cup but at least they appeared in a lot of finals. We have never appeared in a T20 or 50 over game final ever not even in our own country.

      daleinn - 2012-10-09 00:08

      why not choking is contagious .. and the new trend in cricket. we are just good at it.

      megala.arxithia - 2012-10-09 05:54

      South Africa are the kings of least Sri Lanka has won a major title!! SA choked without Graeme 'Grootgat' Smith in the lead which goes to prove that choking is in their blood!

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-09 08:47

      Jo, you are wrong. We did make a final in the ICC trophy of 1998 and beat this team (Sri Lanka). Dawson had a great knock that day.

  • warren.carne.9 - 2012-10-08 20:21

    Not a chance,SL have a World Cup win to their credit,SA are World #1 chokers

  • dean.bayley.31 - 2012-10-08 20:31


      Gloria Barlow - 2012-10-08 21:22

      dean...sri lanka always a brides maid never a bride ....thats choking chow......

  • neil.kroese - 2012-10-08 20:47

    Yeah not "choking" in a final because you never made it past the knock out rounds makes it all better then? Typical Saffa "its not all bad" statistical musical chairs.....

  • Ntutu Dlova - 2012-10-08 20:48

    To continuously loose in the final ,even @home is choking in my books. they take the title this time around

      jo.barton.92 - 2012-10-08 22:06

      They won 1 final and we couldn't make it into the second round in our own country!

  • aidan.w.naude - 2012-10-08 21:02

    Whoever wrote this ridiculous article - please change jobs - they have won a world cup and considering there population its amazing they make finals more regularly than Sa, England West Indies and Pakistan. Maybe just maybe the teams that beat them in finals are the better team - give credit where its due.

  • peter.mansfield.395 - 2012-10-08 21:17

    "SL inherit SA's 'chokers' tag". What a silly headline! Did the writer not notice that South Africa choked much earlier! OK, the headline might be OK if it had added "as South Africa gains the undisputed title of King Chockers".

      Corli Brits - 2012-10-08 21:23

      Peter Mansfield please immigrate tommorow!

      boereroo.jackman - 2012-10-09 06:42

      Corli you do know the difference between immigrate and emigrate right? Probably not.

  • sello.r.molefe - 2012-10-08 21:20

    We the chokers period....

      Corli Brits - 2012-10-08 21:23

      No you are a choker!idiot

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-09 08:50

      The All Blacks still hold that record, only won the RWC once since the Boks started playing in 1995, every year they were the number 1 team, Only won once in last 5 times.

  • Jason - 2012-10-08 21:31

    What utter rubbish!! South Africa have worked dilligently for a number of years to qualify for the title of No 1 ranked chokers. I REFUSE to let SL "inherit" the title. If they want it, they must earn it! or they musy negotiate with SA Cricket for the rights. No freebees .

      boom.afridi.56 - 2012-10-08 21:38


  • Grannatjie - 2012-10-08 22:13

    No, please, can we keep the "Chokers" tag in South Africa. It says that we are very good except in crunch situations, which is admittedly not ideal, but it sounds so much better than "Pathetic Losers."

  • andre.mouton - 2012-10-08 22:52

    At least SL make the finals. SA cannot even get close

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-10-09 10:39

      We did make the finals in 1998 in first ICC trophy, and won.

  • - 2012-10-08 22:56

    the writer of this article got it wrong,no team in the history of sport can equate to the proteas....the Proteas are chief chokers in the game

  • rlong1952 - 2012-10-09 01:43

    I bet the people that make the most comments about SA or Sri Lanka have never played sport at a high level. It is so easy to sit behind a keyboard and label people. Have you played at international level? probably not, so how about being supportive instead of negative. Oops, that is just too much to ask. Trolls !!

      gerald.smith.9041083 - 2012-10-09 09:04

      If the shoe fits, wear it, TROLL!!!!! Just because the people on this forum might not have played cricket, or any other sport for that matter, at the highest level, does not take away our right to express our opinions, be they negative or otherwise.

      rlong1952 - 2012-10-09 11:49

      Oh you can comment but criticising people that don't live up to your high expectations really is bad. You see, unless you have played right up there, you have no idea what it is like. I have and I really can't handle armchair critics who have absolutely no idea what it is like to participate at that level. Try to be a little more positive, that is far more constructive. Wow, it must be wonderful to be so perfect, what is it like?

      gerald.smith.9041083 - 2012-10-09 13:22

      Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit as the saying goes. If you have played at the highest level, as you claim, then I am sure you wouldn't mind giving us your real name or are you one of those people who lie in order to get others to agree with their misguided point of view

  • idris.nomani - 2012-10-09 08:12

    With 1 world cup under their belt and several appearances in world cup finals....a remarkable achievement by a country with a population of less than half of South Africa.

  • arm.witmens - 2012-10-09 10:48

    ICC - International Choker Champions

  • jacowium - 2012-10-09 12:33

    At the time of this post, only 2 amongst the commentariat spells the word as "chockers". This is a winning trend.

  • rish.moodley - 2012-10-09 12:36

    It's extremely frustrating be a Proteas fan. We just don't have any luck and then fail when it counts by our own poor performance and decisions. From 96, 99, 2003, 2007 and other painful failures, all we have is ‘What If’! However, the sooner we as South Africans stop using the term chokers (even by all accounts, they seem to personify it at times) the sooner we win a cup. Think about it... What is the consequence of us constantly throwing that term at our team? It just sets them up for more failure in future tournaments because mentally they have been brain washed by the media and us into believing that it is inevitable that they ‘choke’. I respectfully ask each and every one of you to make a promise to yourself, to loose that word when it comes to the Proteas. Vent your frustration when we loose but in other ways, jump for joy when we win and then tell the rest of the world to go choke on that...

  • nathan.barnes.503 - 2012-10-09 13:21

    SA actually has won a trophy, conveniently forgotten. Inaugural ICC Champions trophy 1998.

      nathan.barnes.503 - 2012-10-09 13:26

      nathan.barnes.503 - 2012-10-13 14:52

      Actually we have had a string of unfortunate results since the 1992 world cup where the Duckworth Lewis equation left us needing 22 off 1 ball.

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