England all-rounder Ben Stokes (file image)
England all-rounder Ben Stokes (file image)

Stokes took 'cigarette break' to calm nerves during 2019 WC final: Report

ANI | Updated: Jul 14, 2020 15:18 IST

Auckland [New Zealand], July 14 (ANI): As England celebrates one year anniversary of their 50-over World Cup win, it has been revealed that all-rounder Ben Stokes took a cigarette break to calm his nerves during the finals.
In the final against New Zealand, Stokes had gone on to play a knock of 84 runs, but the match had gone to a super over as normal 50-over action ended in a tie.
The revelation of Stokes going for a cigarette break has come from an excerpt from a newly released book named 'Morgan's Men: The Inside Story of England's Rise from Cricket World Cup Humiliation to Glory'.
"Lord's is a cacophony of noise. Music is blaring out of the public address system and the atmosphere is raw as the World Cup final comes down to a Super Over. Twelve balls will settle a seven-week tournament and decide the legacy of this England team," stuff.co.nz quoted an excerpt from the book written by authors Nick Hoult and Steve James wrote.
"Finding a quiet spot as the frenzy of the Super Over approached was hard in a ground packed out with 27,000 supporters and television cameras following the players from the middle, through the Long Room and up the stairs to the dressing room," Hoult and James wrote further.
The authors also went on to say that Stokes went out for a break when skipper Morgan was trying to bring a sense of calm to the side.
"But Ben Stokes had played at Lord's many times. He knows every nook and cranny. As Eoin Morgan tries to bring calm to the England dressing room and sort out their tactics, Stokes nips off for a moment of peace," Hoult and James wrote.
"He is covered in dirt and sweat. He has batted for two hours and 27 minutes of unbelievable tension. What does Stokes do? He goes to the back of the England dressing room, past the attendant's little office, and into the showers. There he lights up a cigarette and has few minutes on his own," they said further.
The Eoin Morgan-led side defeated New Zealand in the finals of the 2019 World Cup on the basis of the boundary-countback rule.
The normal 50-over action and super over ended in a tie, but England had scored more boundaries in the match and as a result, the side was declared as the winners of the tournament.
In the super over, both teams managed to score 15 runs each but England was announced as the winner as they had hit more boundaries in the World Cup final.
England had smashed more boundaries, 26, as compared to New Zealand's 17 boundaries in the match.
This was the second successive time that New Zealand finished as the runners-up in the World Cup. The Kiwis under the leadership of Brendon McCullum lost the final of the 2015 edition to Australia by seven wickets.
In the 2019 finals, New Zealand had won the toss and opted to bat first. The Kiwis posted a score of 241/8 in the allotted fifty overs.
Henry Nicholls top-scored for the Black Caps as he played a knock of 55 runs whereas Chris Woakes and Liam Plunkett scalped three wickets each for England.
Chasing a moderate target, England kept on losing wickets at regular intervals, and in the final over they needed 15 runs for the win.
England had the rub of the green going their way as Martin Guptill's throw went to the boundary, giving England four runs due to an over-throw. But New Zealand managed to keep their nerve and took the match into the super over. (ANI)

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