Windies too fail to break the World Cup jinx

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, April 19, 2007 (AFP) – It appears that the best way to win the World Cup is not to host it. The West Indies became the latest prey to the curse of the hosts after failing to qualify for the semi-finals even before they had finished their Super Eights engagements.

The hosts will take on Bangladesh and England in their last two matches, but defending champions Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and South Africa have already made it to the last-four.

The Cup has been a jinx for the hosts ever since it was launched in 1975. England, India, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa had all tried to change the trend, but failed.

The burden of expectations, a flash of individual brilliance or a pure mathematical error are some of the reasons for the home teams leaving the party earlier than expected.

The West Indies raised their fans’ expectations after qualifying for the second round with an all-win record here — only to dash them with their below-par performances in the Super Eights.

“We are all disappointed and we are very sorry for the way we have performed in