Usually, cricket matches have one ‘Man of the Match’, but there was an unusual match in which there was not one, two, or three but 11 ‘Men of the Match’. This happened in a one-day match between England and Pakistan on September 1, 1996. Pakistan won the match by two wickets and all the players were awarded the Man of the Match title which makes it a matter of discussion even today.
So far, this has happened in the history of cricket twice. The first time, in the match between New Zealand and West Indies on April 3, 1996, when New Zealand won the match as a team effort and the entire team shared the ‘Man of the Match’ title. The second time, it happened in the same year, on September 1 in an ODI match between England and Pakistan.
In the match of 50 overs, England had scored 246 runs. Pakistan chased the target in 49.4 overs with a loss of 8 wickets. Five of the Pakistani batsmen had scored between 29 and 61 runs. Wasim Akram had taken two wickets while Waqar, Saqlain, and Nazir had taken two each. And there was no player from either team who did well in batting as well as bowling.
The adjudicator of the match was Tom Graveney who apparently did not find any one player suitable enough for the honor and hence awarded it to the entire team as 9 out of the 11 members of Pakistan cricket team had, according to him, equal contribution in the victory of their team. But the decision was largely held as a wrong one since two of the Pakistani players, Mujtaba and Kabir, had played the worst but were declared Men of the Match despite their poor performance.