Tuesday, July 23, 2019

NZ vs ENG: Cricket World Cup 2019 finals | England restricts New Zealand to 241


England restricted New Zealand to 241-8 in the World Cup final as the hosts boosted their bid to make history by winning the tournament for the first time on Sunday.

Eoin Morgan’s side were fuelled by three wickets each from Liam Plunkett and Chris Woakes on a green-tinged pitch in cloudy conditions that aided the pace bowlers at Lord’s.

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson had elected to bat first, but his gamble backfired, with only Henry Nicholls (55) reaching a half-century for the 2015 World Cup runners-up in their 50 overs.

England struck early when opener Martin Guptill was dismissed by Woakes, before Williamson and Nicholls put on 74 for the second wicket.

Plunkett restored England’s grip on the match with two quick wickets to remove star batsman Williamson for 30 and then Nicholls.

New Zealand, who are aiming to win the World Cup for the first time, could not establish any momentum after that as economical bowling from Plunkett, Woakes and Mark Wood turned the screw for England.

Plunkett finished with impressive figures of three wickets for 42 runs from his 10 overs, while Woakes took 3-37 from nine overs.

Derek Pringle was the only previous England player to take three wickets in a World Cup final, his haul coming against Pakistan in 1992.

Pringle’s efforts were in vain as they lost that final against Pakistan 27 years ago.

England were also beaten in their two other World Cup finals, against Australia in 1987 and the West Indies in 1979.

Thanks to Plunkett and Woakes, England are within touching distance of finally ending their long wait to join England’s footballers in 1966 and the 2003 rugby union team as world champions.

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