Carlos Brathwaite falls just short of a historical West Indies victory as Trent Boult’s calm headed catch wins it for the Kiwis at Manchester
So near yet so far. This is perhaps the best brief statement that one can come up with after the Cricketing fraternity arguably witnesses the best match of the tournament so far between West Indies and New Zealand, at The Old Trafford Ground in Manchester.
West Indies fell agonisingly short just by 5 runs, to deservedly sum up an absolute exciting day of Cricket which the World Cup was longing since its arrival. The match was heading towards the Deja Vu moment with the on and off field combination of Carlos Brathwaite and Ian Bishop. But, Trent Boult made sure that the Kiwis too maintain their winning streak alongside India, in the World Cup campaign so far, albeit a whisker.
A perfect see-saw battle
Diving into the nitty-gritty, particularly of the second half of the game, the Windies– come another day, come another collapse, again had dug a comfortable grave for themselves and were all set to loss the game comfortably after being at a strong position.
They were 142/2 at one point in time, smashing the Kiwi bowlers black and blue with Shimron Hetmyer (54 off 45) and Chris Gayle (87 off 84) doing the damage. But, the adamant willingness not to curb their natural hitting instincts, meant that they were reduced to 164/7, with only Carlos Brathwaite at the crease as a proper recognised batsman.
But, Brathwaite had some other plans, and made sure that he won’t dive into the graveyard so soon. He fought a lone duel with the potent Kiwi attack and fought till the 49th over alongside the tail. Windies required 47 in the final 5 overs with just one wicket in hand.
The Matt Henry over
With 33 required of the last three overs, Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson in dearth of options threw the ball to Matt Henry, who had a pretty ordinary outing with the ball till that point. It is at that point that Brathwaite did to Henry what he did to Ben Stokes in the finals of the 2016 T20 World Cup. In fact, even bettered that.
He annihilated Henry for 25 runs in the over, as he smashed 3 sixes and a four to bring down the equation to 8 runs required off 12 deliveries.
The agonizing moment
With a couple of runs in the 4th ball of the penultimate over, Brathwaite brought up his maiden ODI century off just 80 deliveries. But, just a couple of balls hence, Jimmy Neesham bowled a short delivery to which Brathwaite hammered the pull at the longish long-on fence, and Boult, as cool as cucumber took a breathtaking catch just inches before the rope, to make a difficult, high-pressure catch look pretty simple in the end.
A dejected Carlos, was down on his knees, as he was just inches short of a fairy tale Windies victory. The complete Windies dug out, akin Brathwaite and their supporters were dumbstruck with what they witnesses in the final few hurting moments.
For the Kiwis, Trent Boult was bowled a terrific spell with figures of 10-1-30-4. Lockie Ferguson too scalped 3 crucial wickets in the innnings. In the batting department, skipper yet again smashed a magnificent century, piling up 148 runs off 154. He did major run-scoring for the Kiwis they could mange only 291 runs on the board.
WATCH: The final moment that came as a shoker for Carlos Brathwaite and the Windies
You just have to see it to believe it!!! 🤯
An all or nothing catch in the deep by Trent Boult is the difference between winning and losing a @cricketworldcup classic.
— ICC (@ICC) June 22, 2019