Saturday, 13 July 2019

Match Forty Seven

So New Zealand managed to beat India, a result no one saw coming and the second semi final imminent.  Going into the game against Australia I felt calm and confident...

Once again I took the radio to work but this time I managed to remember to switch the thing on and together with the Cricinfo commentary on the computer I stayed in touch with the game all day.  Australia won the toss and batted first which in some ways took the pressure off as the team batting first was expected to win.  Archer and Woakes combined with a brilliant new ball spell to reduce Australia to 14/3 and all nerves were gone, I knew the game was ours.  Even with Smith and Carey putting on a century stand I still felt we had the game under control.  When Rashid stitched up the middle order I was actually enjoying the match, even with so much at stake.  The pace men blew the tail away and England needed 224 to win.

We know the Aussie bowlers are class but we also knew we wouldn't have to hurry.  Bairstow and Roy played themselves in then dispatched the Aussie attack to all parts of Birmingham, it was glorious!  Even after they departed Root and Morgan didn't let up and make the win look easy.  This was a brutal display, ODI cricket at its best and now we're in the final!

So tomorrow I'll be at work with my radio again and yes I will be nervous.  England are the best ODI team in the world and fully deserve to win but the Kiwis are a good side too.  We were the best side in '92 but peaked too soon...  That's the trouble with one day cricket, the margins can be so fine.  This time tomorrow we could be world champions but still I barely dare to hope.  Sunday will be emotional, whatever happens.

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