On 3rd of April, last year the television broadcasters witnessed a remarkable day. Cricket fans from around the globe had tuned in to watch the final of the World T20 Cricket Championship. The game was suppose to take place at Eden Gardens Kolkata, India and was being played between England and the West Indies. An audience of over 90,000 was present in the stadium to witness the final moments of the tournament.
Both the teams had previously won the title and hence, knew what it takes to become champions. West Indian Captain Darren Sammy won the toss and decided to field first. Both West Indies and England remained unchanged and employed the same players who had featured during the semi-final game.
England’s in-form, Jason Roy and dangerous looking, Alex Hales departed early. Skipper Eoin Morgon too couldn’t contribute much and thus, the English boys at one stage were struggling with the score card reading 23-3 in only 4.4 overs. But then Joe Root and wicket-keeper and batsman, Jos Buttler provided the innings some stability with a partnership of 61 runs. Still, England could only manage 155-9 in their allotted quota of 20 overs. Commentators began rating the West Indies as the favorite.
However, the Windies too were off to a poor start and lost both their openers early. Lendl Simmons was also dismissed cheaply. It was then Marlon Samuels and Dwayne Bravo who took the charge. Still, as the innings progressed the required run rate went up to 11 runs an over. Hence, with pressure mounting the likes of Bravo, Russell and Sammy also departed in quick succession.
With only the last over remaining, West Indies required 19 runs to claim the title. English players both on the field and in the dugout seemed happy. Morgon deputed the experienced Ben Stokes to deliver the last six balls of the game. However, Carlos Brathwaite had other ideas as he finished off the game with four consecutive sixes!!
The final turned out to be one of the most exciting World T20 encounters in recent years. It’s been a year but as I write, I feel the same adrenaline rush as I did when I was watching the game live!