Another ICC World Cup is done and dusted where Eoin Morgan led England beat Kane Williamson led New Zealand in a thrilling super over at Lord’s and won their maiden World Cup. They even reached the final after 27 years and after 23 years, the world got its new World Champion.
New Zealand won the toss and chose to bat first. Although openers Martin Guptill and Henry Nichollsstarted well, that didn’t last long. Kane Williamson scored a fighting 30 while Nicholls fell for 55. Tom Latham scored 47 and put up a total of 241 after 50 overs with the loss of 8 wickets. Chris Woakes and Liam Plunkett bagged 3 wickets each and dismantled the line-up.
Chasing the target, England needed a steady start where their in-form opener Jason Roy fell for 17. Although Jonny Bairstow scored 36, Joe Root and Eoin Morgan failed to score big. The pressure fell upon Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler who both added 110 runs and the game surprisingly went on a super over.
The game took a dramatic turn when Trent Boult came to bowl in the final over when England needed 15 runs to win. When the first two balls went for no run, Ben Stokes hit a maximum through deep mid-wicket in the third ball. Stokes hit the fourth ball away from the deep mid-wicket and he was running for 2 runs.
Surprisingly, with his dive into the striker’s end, the ball hit his bat and went for four and England got 6 runs. Although Boult dismissed the next two batsmen in the next two deliveries through run-out, they managed to equal the score and led the game to the super over.
England put up 15 runs in the super over. New Zealand too scored 15 while chasing. However, England won the game on the back of their moe number of boundaries. They hit 22 boundaries while New Zealand hit 14. This was probably the first time when boundary count decided the World Cup winner, according to the rules.
In the post-match press conference, Kane Williamson was asked about this where he shared, “I suppose you never thought you would have to ask that question and I never thought I would have to answer it.” Although he wanted to set a target of 250-260 for the final.
“We sort of wanted 250, 260. We knew that it wasn’t easy and we were expecting it to dry a little bit more and it did do that and I think we saw in the first sort of 10 overs the movement that we were able to get and we were able to pick up those early wickets and I think that was due to the pitch and the bowlers putting the ball in great areas which they have done all tournament,” said Williamson.
Later, he was asked if everybody should be a gentleman like you as he signalled that Trent Boult had stood on the rope and that wasn’t a six while he had the chance to dismiss Ben Stokes.
He replied, “Everybody are allowed to be themselves. That is a good thing about the world. And everybody should be a little bit different as well. Really difficult question to answer. That is probably my best answer, just be yourself and try and enjoy what you do (laughter).”
“It was a fantastic game to be a part of. It is quite hard to look at it in a rational way when we have just been through what we’ve been through,” he further added.
However, Kane Williamson became the ‘Player of the Tournament’ for his outstanding contribution who literally took the team to the final single-handedly with more than 500 runs while leading from the front.
“An individual performance is only a contribution to something greater than yourself and that is the team. The idea is that you are helping your team get across the line and the only thing you can perhaps think of at this point in time is what more I could have done and when the margin is so small,” he said.
“I think all the guys should take a lot of pride in what they have been able to achieve throughout this whole campaign and individual accolades are very much secondary to the efforts that everybody within the whole squad, the support staff as well, we are all putting into the bucket and I think that was huge in us getting the opportunity to being here in the final and playing some really, really competitive cricket in this final as well, so that is always the focus,” Kane Williamson further added.