Lord’s – Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler steered England to World Cup glory over New Zealand. Cricket alone can produce a match with two ties and still have a winner. Through it all, Ben and Jos were in the thick of this emotional roller-coaster ride.
Batting first, New Zealand set England 242 to win.
England were 86-4 when Jos joined Ben in the middle. Victory was slipping away, before the pair methodically started to accumulate runs. Together, they turned England’s innings around with a 5th wicket partnership of 110.
Jos made 59 in 60 balls. He brought a calm reassurance to the crease combining well-placed shots with powerful blows. While Ben played yet another heroic innings making an unbeaten 84.
After Jos was caught by substitute fielder Tim Southee in the 45th over, it was down to Ben to fulfil the hopes and wishes of England’s supporters. 46 runs were still needed.
What followed was pure sporting drama.
England needed 15 runs from the final over. Ben hit the third ball for 6. Next ball, Ben was scrambling for two runs, the throw came in, he dived to make his ground only for the ball to deflect off his bat for 4 overthrows. The final two balls saw two runs and two run outs. The match was tied.
For the first time in an ODI, the Super Over was brought into play. Ben and Jos came out to bat in the six-ball shoot-out hitting 15 runs. New Zealand needed 2 runs off the last of their 6 balls. As the batters ran for their second run Jason Roy’s throw thud into Jos’ gloves. Jos broke the stumps with Martin Guptill out of his ground. The Super Over was tied, but England won because they hit more boundaries in the final.
The Man of the Match was rightly Ben Stokes.
(Photo by Narayan Maharjan/NurPhoto via Getty Images)