England finally win their 1st Men’s Cricket World Cup. One has to say that they were always going to do it, based on being ranked number one in ODI Cricket. It was not as easy as it looked though. Back to back defeats routed by Sri Lanka and Australia had hearts pumping in the England dressing room, and it had to take guts and a strong mind to overcome the agony a couple weeks ago. England had to win three matches on the trot to reach the World Cup final for the first time since 1992. It was skipper Eoin Morgan who led from the front to ensure that after the final, people all across England will look at Cricket differently in a good way. Everyone knows how big football is in that part of the World and cricketers such as Jos Buttler used the 2005 Ashes as inspiration for this World Cup campaign.
This by far was seen as the greatest Cricket World Cup 50 over final ever in the history of the game. A tied final followed by a super over that also tied, and unfortunately the winner being decided on the more boundaries hit by England overhauling New Zealand. The Lord’s Cricket Ground in London went absolutely crazy when Martin Guptill was run-out at the striker’s end with Buttler’s swift movement gathering the throw from the deep to throw down the stumps……..incredible and great moment indeed for the English!
Trent Boult, despite being such an excellent athlete, let it slip on the boundary when Stokes smashed a Jimmy Neesham ball wide of long-on and somehow stepped backward on the line to allow England the luxury of six runs.
Ben Stokes who was the villain in April 2016 at Eden Gardens after being smashed for four consecutive sixes by West Indian Carlos Brathwaite redeemed himself three years later with a whirlwind score of 84 not out in chasing down a target of 242. It has to be said that in Stokes’ situation, the villain has become the hero and rightly so after being named Man of the Match in this World Cup final. The New Zealand team suffered their 2nd World Cup final defeat and this time they felt the pain even more. It was like pouring salt water into an open cut on the body…….ouch!!!
Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler posted 110 runs for the fifth wicket to keep the Englishmen in with a glory of hope. Each struck half centuries and brought the equation down to 46 needed off 31 deliveries, before Buttler departed for a well played 59. Trent Boult, despite being such an excellent athlete, let it slip on the boundary when Stokes smashed a Jimmy Neesham ball wide of long-on and somehow stepped backward on the line to allow England the luxury of six runs. The drama continued to build on this epic final. More nail-biting craziness continued as Stokes found a way to score six runs without hitting the ball over the boundary rope. In reality, it should have been given as five runs as the ball went into the boundary, but somehow lady luck was on England’s side as well as Stokes’. The ball deflected off his bat to the third man boundary.
Adil Rashid and Mark Wood failed to get over the line as each was run-out going for a second run. With two runs required off the last ball, Stokes hit it to long-on but Wood’s athletic running was not good enough as the game tied and transformed into the super over. Earlier in the day, New Zealand won the toss and elected smartly to bat first. Martin Guptill’s horror run with the bat in this edition of the 2019 World Cup was ended with his score on 19. Henry Nicholls scored a crucial 55 and added 74 runs with his captain Kane Williamson for the second wicket.
England’s most consistent fast-bowler in the last 4 years Liam Plunkett did the business for England as he snapped up the Kiwi skipper caught by the keeper and then followed it up bowling Nicholls in the 27th over. Wicket-keeper batsman Tom Latham kept his side in the hunt with 47 runs before he was removed by Chris Woakes caught by substitute James Vince. Neesham and Grandhomme struggled to achieve a meaningful strike-rate and this reflected in New Zealand scoring just 62 runs in the final 10 overs. All in all it was a great World Cup final and the people at the ground definitely got their monies worth. How unfortunate for New Zealand to lose the game in the manner of which they did. Such is life, but their time will come in the future to lift the trophy no doubt. Such a pleasant team and spirit of the game is always shown by the Kiwis no matter the circumstance. God is good!