There are Australian players rushing onto the field before the ball has gone past the third man boundary! Mitchell Marsh spreads his arms and takes flight. What a moment for him. He’s sprinted a long way before falling to his knees trying to process what’s just happened. What he’s done, rather. A long, emotional hug from Marcus Stoinis follows. He’s walking around, looking for his family in the stands as Kane Richardson carries his bat for him.
Carry it all! Stunning, stunning innings in a final. Glenn Maxwell, having reverse-swished the last ball for four, is a little more level-headed about it all. But how fitting is it that their best batter in the format takes them home? He is perhaps the only player bar Warner in this format for them who has embraced the new-age, analytically tilted version of T20 cricket.
But what does all of that mean anyway if you can win a World Cup the old way? Australia wasn’t a lot of people’s favorites coming into the tournament because of those reasons, but they had game-changers all through that line-up and they stood up in turn, and regularly enough to seal this title.
For New Zealand, heartbreak in a second straight limited-overs final.
We speculated at the halfway stage about whether their slow start would cost them. And in the end, the same pattern has played out in the final as in the two semi-finals. The third straight win for a chasing team with at least an over to spare. The third straight win for the team batting second. It was really Williamson fighting a lone battle for New Zealand tonight, and with batting getting easier through the game, his very solid bowling line-up couldn’t quite show up.
the hat is Shane Watson’s assessment of this Mitchell Marsh innings. It is certainly going to be a memorable one. We’ve had all the hallmarks of a Marsh innings tonight – the brute force, the ability to find sixes and to punish bad balls. It’s no secret how highly rated Marsh is in Australian cricket, and he has finally come to the fore in a big match for them; a lot of things had to be put in place for that, not least his batting position.
Batting him at 3 is something Australia figured out in the lead up to the tournament, and they gave him consistency there, something he hasn’t had in national colors; it’s paid off massively. Australia got a lot of control through Adam Zampa in the middle overs, and tonight’s the one night that New Zealand hasn’t been able to rely on Ish Sodhi for the same.
Take a look at this length distribution above – it’s a combination of stunning back-foot power play from Australia, and the nerves brought on by that. The pace, the spin, the lengths, and the lines – they’ve all been scattered for Sodhi tonight, and it’s an unfortunate end to a pretty good campaign otherwise for him.