Cricket Weekly Column #8 World Cup Final

Welcome to a special edition of Overtime’s Cricket Weekly Column, where we are covering the World Cup final!

Who will come out on top between England and New Zealand?

Sunday July 14 England v New Zealand at Lords’

New Zealand: 241/8 (Nicholls 55, Latham 47, Woakes 3-37, Plunkett 3-42)

England: 241 (Stokes 84no, Buttler 59, Neesham 3-43, Ferguson 3-50)

Super Over

England: 15/0 (Stokes 8no, Buttler 7no, Boult 0-15)

New Zealand: 15/1 (Neesham 13no, Guptill 1, Archer 0-15)

England won on more boundaries scored.

Full scorecard:
https://www.cricketworldcup.com/match/8239

England stole victory from the jaws of defeat to win their first-ever one-day World Cup after a gripping final at Lords’.

New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat knowing that the tough batting pitch prepared at Lords’ was going to get worse in the second innings.

They reached a par total of 241/8 courtesy of steady knocks from Henry Nicholls (55) and Tom Latham (47) as Chris Woakes and Liam Plunkett dominated with the ball for England with three wickets each.

Number one in the world and the hosts of the tournament, England were strong favourites before the tournament began.

However, they had been accused of bottling the occasion in the group stages and this looked to be the case again when they collapsed to 76 for four.

They recovered through a 110-run partnership from Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler got England back into the game before New Zealand fought back with a couple of quick wickets.

Stokes had arguably been England’s best player in the group stages with strong innings against South Africa, Sri Lanka and Australia.

Once again, he would stand up and perform as a stunning finish saw Stokes hit 14 off the last over to tie the game and force a Super Over to decide the winner of the World Cup.

However, this did not come without some extremely lucky moments for Stokes.

On 64 he was caught on the boundary by Trent Boult, but the New Zealand left-arm fast bowler stepped on the rope as the catch was taken resulting in six runs.

But the luckiest moment was in the last over when Stokes nudged a shot into the gap and pushed for two and as he came charging back and dived into his crease to make his ground a throw from Martin Guptill from the boundary hit Stokes’ diving bat and ran away for four, giving him another six runs.

After 47 matches of cricket across three months, it came down to a one-over shootout for the World Cup.

England batted first and sent in Stokes and Buttler who powered England to 15, giving New Zealand a target of 16 to win.

Jofra Archer was to bowl for England, a player who had only received his first call-up to an England squad a month before the World Cup began.

This looked to be a bad decision as despite all his skill Archer was taken for 11 off three balls with James Neesham smashing him for a huge six off his first ball.

However, Archer recovered well to restrict New Zealand to three off two balls which meant the World Cup would come down to one ball and the Kiwis would need two runs.

New Zealand could not afford to tie the game as this would result in England winning on more boundaries scored across their innings.

Guptill knocked Archer’s delivery into the gap, Jason Roy who had previously fumbled a ball to allow New Zealand a crucial run, hared in from the boundary picked up the ball cleanly and threw to Jos Buttler.

Buttler turned and dived to whip the bails off and with Guptill miles out, sprinted off in celebration as England won the World Cup by “the barest of margins.” as legendary Kiwi commentator Ian Smith described it.

A quite brutal way to lose for New Zealand especially after being defeated by Australia four years ago but it has to be said that no team deserves it more than England, a side that has gone through so much in the past four years to get to this point.

Overall, I think Andrew Strauss description of the final is the perfect summary, “the greatest game in cricket history.”

MOTM: Ben Stokes – What. A. Player. He has gone through a lot over the past three years, throwing away the 2016 T20 World Cup, the incident in Bristol but Stokes has shown so much character to overcome this and its very fitting that he was the one to essentially win the World Cup for England.

Wow. What a Final. England finally got the rewards they deserve for consistent performances in one-day cricket and the transformation that Eoin Morgan and Trevor Bayliss have helped cause.

However, New Zealand must get some plaudits after being outside shouts for the World Cup to pushing England all the way.

A classy player and captain such as Kane Williamson losing a World Cup is a sad sight to see for any cricket fan and I am sure his time will no doubt come.

Now with the World Cup over Cricket Weekly will go back to regular uploads every Monday with coverage of the Ashes, T20 Blast and much more!

For more cricket content click here: http://www.overtimeonline.co.uk/category/cricket/

For our summary of the semi-final fixtures click here:
http://www.overtimeonline.co.uk/cricket-weekly-column-cricket-world-cup-semi-finals/

Sub-edited by Tony Robertson

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