After 6 weeks of madness the World Cup Final was here! July 14th is a landmark day in my life, in a horrible way. My son, Luke died after being […]
After 6 weeks of madness the World Cup Final was here! July 14th is a landmark day in my life, in a horrible way. My son, Luke died after being involved in an accident in Thailand, he was 21 and that was 10 years ago. Incredible how time keeps moving on, yet that’s only right. My day started with a few tears, would England bring me joy and some new memories for July 14th?
I was extraordinarily lucky in the ballot for this World Cup, receiving 10 tickets, to which I added a further 5. In that ballot offering was a ticket for the Final, just wow!
The day arrived and so did rain in London, it cleared in plenty of time, but with a damp outfield play was delayed by 15 minutes. Kane Williamson won the toss and elected to bat.
Martin Guptill and Henry Nicholls opened the batting, both men survived loud appeals from England, one, an LBW was given for Nicholls, it looked plumb but DRS said the ball was missing the stumps. The other was ignore by the umpire and England as far as a review went.
Guptill was then trapped LBW by Chris Woakes, he wasted the NZ appeal, he was very clearly out. Guptill had looked dangerous, he hit a Six from the bowling of Joffra Archer swiftly followed by a straight Four. As an England fan it was good to see him leave. New Zealand were 29 for 1, then 33 for 2 after 10 overs. Their 50 came up in the 14th over, this clearly wasn’t a road/an easy wicket to bat on.
With Williamson and Nicholls at the crease England were in need of a wicket. Plunkett bowled 3 overs from the pavilion end before Adil Rashid replaced him. Mark Wood was bowling from the Nursery End. New Zealand’s 100 came up in the 21st over.
England got the breakthrough they needed when Williamson nicked a ball to Jos Buttler from the bowling of Plunkett! The umpire’s finger stayed down, England reviewed and the ball was shown to have brushed the bat, a key wicket, Williamson, one of the best batsmen on the World was gone for 30. New Zealand were 103 for 2 in the 23rd over. Nicholls was on 46.
Nicholls deserved 50 came up from 71 balls in the 26th over, he’d worked hard for the landmark . Liam Plunkett struck again in the 27th over, Nicholls hit the ball onto his own stumps, he was gone for 55 and New Zealand were 118 for 3. That was Plunkett’s 10th wicket in the competition and all 10 have been top 5 batsmen.
After 30 overs New Zealand were 126 for 3. Wood swapped ends to bowl at the pavilion end, that worked! He trapped Ross Taylor LBW, he was out for 15 and New Zealand were 141 for 4 in the 34th over.
Jimmy Neesham came in and took his team to their 150 in the 35th over, with a Four from the bowling of Ben Stokes.
Neesham looked set, he’d hit a couple of big shots, but it was Plunkett who struck again, a catch for Joe Root and Neesham was out for just 7. New Zealand were 173 for 5 after 39 overs
Liam Plunkett finished his 10 overs with 10 for 42, a very decent return.
New Zealand’s 200 came up with a wide from Archer in the 44th over. He proceeded to bowl a further 2 wides in the over. Archer came back well in his next over, bamboozling De Grandhomme
Woakes came back on for the 47th over, the New Zealand batsmen were struggling to get the ball away, De Grandhomme didn’t get enough on a Woakes ball, he gave sub fielder James Vince a simple catch and was gone for 16. New Zealand were 220 for 6 with 3 overs remaining.
Woakes bowled a wide which went for Four, something of a disaster in the 49th over. Tom Latham who’d batted very well to make 47 was caught by Vince from the next ball. The over featured a no ball too, the Free Hit ball beat the bat, Woakes finished his 9 overs with 3 for 37 a wonderful spell for England’s best bowler in the tournament.
Archer bowled the final over, he had a ball called wide then clean bowled Matt Henry for 2. New Zealand were 240 for 8 with 3 balls remaining. They finished on 241, that total included 30 extras. Archer finished with 1 for 42 from his 10 overs.
England’s innings started with Jason Roy surviving an LBW call, from the bowling of Trent Boult, the umpire said no, the DRS said umpires call. Phew!
However there was to be no big score for Roy in this final, he was lucky with a ball from Matt Henry, it sailed past his bat, but, no such luck with the next, he nicked to Tom Latham, and was out for 17. England were 28 for 1 in the 6th over.
De Grandhomme came on from the Pavilion end and put down a catch, Bairstow had fired the ball back at him hard, but it was catchable. England’s 50 came up in the 14th over with a streaky Four from the edge of Bairstow’s bat.
Joe Root, who’d come in at 3, seemed to lose his head in the 17th over. He swung at a ball from De Grandhomme, luckily missing it, but he didn’t miss the next ball, he edged it to Latham and was gone for just 7. Poor from Root, he just needed to play a steady innings. England were 59 for 2.
Lockie Ferguson, who’d been a key bowler for New Zealand clean bowled Bairstow for 36 and England were in some trouble on 71 for 3 in the 20th over.
Showing a total lack of respect for the new bowler, Morgan tried to hit Jimmy Neesham out of the ground, Ferguson took a great catch and the captain was out! Having scored a huge 9, this we play this way attitude was losing England a World Cup Final! As was how well the Black Caps were bowling.
England’s 100 came up in the 28th over with a straight drive for Four from Ben Stokes.
New Zealand burnt their review with an LBW shout in the 36th over. We then had an umpire review for run out on the next ball, the Third Umpire was very quick to say NO! There were 2 of these umpire reviews for a run out, both of which were clear to see from the stands let alone from the umpires position.
De Grandhomme finished his 10 overs with 1 for 25. England’s 150 came up in the 38th over. Stokes had 36 from 60 and Buttler 31 from 38.
Matt Henry finished his 10 overs with 1 for 40 and England required 72 from 60 balls.
Buttler and Stokes were struggling to get the ball away, but had built a great partnership, both reaching their half centuries. In the 45th over Buttler went for a ball from Ferguson and was caught by Southee, on as a sub, he was out for 59 and England were 196 for 5 they needed 46 from 31 balls.
The way the Blackcaps were bowling it was hard to see where those runs would come from. Chris Woakes skied a ball from Ferguson and was caught by Latham for 2. England needed 39 from 23 balls.
That moved to 22 needed from 10 balls, Plunkett went for it and was caught by Boult from the bowling of Neesham. 22 from 9 and Archer joined Stokes.
At this point I’m going to go to to a different piece – this one I was writing as the game went along – unsurprisingly I had to stop! TO BE CONTINUED