World Cup 2019 final, New Zealand vs England: Two moments that turned the tide in England’s favour
England won the ICC World Cup for the first time in extraordinary circumstances on Sunday as they defeated New Zealand by virtue of hitting more boundaries after the final was tied after the regulation 50 overs and the first ever super over in the tournament’s history. After both sides made 241 from their 50 overs, the scores could again not be separated when each team posted 15 from a six-ball shootout. England wicket-keeper Jos Buttler ran out Martin Guptill off the last ball of the Super Over as the New Zealand opener scrambled back for a second run that would have earned the Black Caps their first world title. The match was filled with twists and turns but there were two moments in the final two overs of the regulation period which turned the game in England’s favour.
In the 49th over, England needed more than 20 runs to win the match and it was all down to Ben Stokes who was looking quite good after scoring his half century. With eight balls to go, Stokes went for a big shot off Jimmy Neesham but ended up giving a catch to Trent Boult at the boundary. All seemed lost for the hosts but Boult stepped on the boundary and before he could realise, it was too late and it was a six for England.
Another crucial moment came in the very next over as the ball ricocheted off Ben Stokes’ bat for a boundary while he was trying to complete a run. Stokes ran two and while he was trying to make his ground, the ball struck his bat and run to the boundary for overthrows. With 9 runs from 3 balls, the equation was in the Kiwis’ favour till then but the six runs off the delivery turned the game completely in England’s favour.
New Zealand made 241 for eight after winning the toss and England were in trouble when they slumped to 86 for four.But a 110-run fifth-wicket partnership between Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler gave the hosts a chance, and Stokes went on to make 84 not out as England were dismissed for 241 off the final ball of their 50 overs.
Stokes and Buttler returned to score 15 in England’s Super Over before Jimmy Neesham and Martin Guptill made 15 for New Zealand, leaving England as the winners because they hit more boundaries in the match.
(With agency inputs)