New Zealand and England have waited four years for this moment, for this life-changing shot at redemption.
For the Kiwis, the Cricket World Cup final at Lord’s today is a chance to avenge their drubbing at the hands of Australia in the 2015 showpiece. It was their first World Cup final and they didn’t do themselves justice in Melbourne.
“A little bit overawed,” recalled batsman Ross Taylor, who will be one of five New Zealand survivors from that seven-wicket loss.
For the English, it’s a very different opportunity for atonement from 2015 when a group-stage exit proved to be an all-time ODI low for the country that invented cricket. What has happened since – an overhaul of domestic white-ball cricket, a new team and mindset, and a rise to the top of the ODI rankings – has been both surprising and stunning to watch.
So, a new name – the sixth – will be etched on the World Cup trophy at the home of cricket after Australia, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and West Indies.