In the end, it was only the count of boundaries decided the ICC World Cup winner, i.e. England who scored more number of boundaries than New Zealand and emerged victorious in the final at Lord’s on Sunday, July 14.
New Zealand chose to bat first after winning the toss. Openers Martin Guptill and Henry Nicholls got off to a steady start. Although that didn’t last long as Chris Woakes provided with the first breakthrough and Guptill fell for 19. Bowlers did pretty well as Nicholls and Kane Williamson added 74 runs before Williamson fell for 30.
It was Liam Plunkett who bowled Nicholls after scoring his first fifty in the tournament. Ross Taylor once again failed to score big. He fell to an error of umpiring from Marais Erasmus who gave him out in a shout of LBW off Mark Wood. However, the replays showed that the ball was going over the stumps. His dismissal left New Zealand struggling at 141-4 after 33.1 overs.
James Neesham scored a quick 19 but ended up lofting Plunkett to mid-on which made the situation more critical for the Kiwis. Tom Latham played another important knock where he scored a 56-ball 47 with two boundaries and a six. New Zealand managed to score just 62 runs in the last 10 overs. Chris Woakes and Plunkett’s three-wicket hauls each dismantled New Zealand’s line up and restricted within 241 after 50 overs with the loss of 8 wickets.
While chasing 241 to win, England started slow and the pitch certainly helped the bowlers. Jason Roy survived a call of Leg-before in the very first ball of the innings but fell in the sixth over after giving an easy catch to Tom Latham off Matt Henry.
Although Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root started to steady the ship, Root took 30 balls to score mere 7 before his dismissal. However, Bairstow made sure that the scoreboard ticking and scored 36 off 55 before Lockie Ferguson bowled him. Captain Eoin Morgan also failed to reach the double-digit as he fell for 9 off 22 when Ferguson took a stunner while running in from the deep on the off-side off Jimmy Neesham.
The pressure fell upon Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler. Both started to resurrect the innings, stitching a 110-run partnership for the fifth wicket. Their timely boundaries and rotating strike helped them to score smoothly in the final 10 overs.
However, Buttler fell for 59 off 60 in the 45th over but Stokes was there. Chris Woakes, Liam Plunkett and Jofra Archer all were dismissed in quick succession before a dramatic final two overs took the team to a tie. New Zealand were way ahead of England there as England needed 15 runs in the last over.
Ben Stokes hit a six in the 3rd ball while the 4th ball went for a boundary while Stokes was completing his second run and the ball hit his bat and went for a four which gave them six runs. However, with 3 needed off 2 balls, New Zealand were able to do two consecutive run-outs and the game ended in a tie and for the first time in the history of World Cup, a Super Over was about to decide the winner.
England scored 15 runs while batting first in the Super Over on the back of a couple of boundaries from Stokes. In reply, Jimmy Neesham and Martin Guptill also scored the same in their six balls. However, according to the rules, the team who scores more boundaries will be the winner. England scored 26 boundaries while New Zealand scored 17 which helped England to win their first title.