The drama which unfolded at the Lord’s in London on Sunday, has no parallels in cricket. It was the mother of all thrillers, a heart-stopping drama so intense that you could feel the hallowed pavilions at the Lord’s tremor in agitation.
With New Zealand winning the toss they chose to bat first.
After batting 50 overs, the match ended in a tie with New Zealand scoring 241 runs with the fall of eight wickets and England responding with 241 too.
The English team, benefitted from two huge strokes of lucks in the final overs of the 50 over innings. Firstly, Trent Boult caught a catch of Ben Stokes but ended up falling over the boundary lines. And Stokes got another lifeline.
Secondly, Ben Stokes hit a six on Boult’s bowling. Off the next ball, Stokes sent the ball into the midwicket region where Martin Guptill fielded, the ball hit the toe of a diving Stokes’s outstretched bat and scooted towards the boundary for four overthrows. This way England got six runs in all, bringing down the equation to three runs in two balls.
To know who the champion was, the Super Over was played for the first time in a World cup final.
New Zealand needed two runs off the last ball when Jofra Archer bowled in the Super Over. Martin Guptill pushed the ball towards midwicket and took off for two. But the throw from Jason Roy was good and Jos Buttler broke the stumps with Guptill falling short of his dive at the last ball.
The Super Over also finished on a tie, both teams scoring 15 each, which led to the count of boundaries hit by both the teams. England had 26 against 17 by New Zealand.
So, after 23 years, the world got a new champion. England won the World Cup by the faintest possible margin.
Ben Stokes was the Player of the match in the World Cup final, scoring 84 runs which included five fours and two sixes.
New Zealand captain, Kane Williamson, was named the Man of the Series. At the presentation, he said, ‘Congratulations to England on a fantastic campaign. It’s been challenging, the pitches have been a little different to what we expected. I’d like to thank the New Zealand team for the fight they showed to keep us in the tournament, and get us this far. A tie in the final. So many parts to it. The players are shattered at the moment. Obviously it’s devastating. They’ve performed at such a high level through the tournament.”