The whole cricket world was engrossed in the ICC 2019 Cricket World Cup final between England and New Zealand that ended in a tie. But when England were declared winners following the super over, which also ended in a tie, there was some consternation as well as discontentment among the fans and experts.
As per the rules of the tournament, with the super over also ending up in a tie, the winner of the match had to be decided on the basis of who hit the most boundaries in the match. England were ahead of the Kiwis on that count and hence took away the title. This caused many ex-cricketers to lash out at the rules and the cricket's governing body, ICC, for having them in this tournament.
Interestingly, it's not just New Zealanders that felt unhappy about how the World Cup winner was chosen, but even some English former players. Former fast bowler for England Steve Harmison, speaking to New Zealand radio station Radio Sport, said: "It took me about 10/15 minutes to work out how England won.
"It is ridiculous. But I think it would be more ridiculous if it were England that lost and New Zealand that won."
Scott Styris, former Black Caps all-rounder simply wrote, "Nice work @ICC ... you are a joke!!!" on his Twitter page.
He had ample support from former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir. "Don't understand how the game of such proportions, the #CWC19Final, is finally decided on who scored the most boundaries. A ridiculous rule @ICC. Should have been a tie. I want to congratulate both @BLACKCAPS & @englandcricket on playing out a nail biting Final."
Another former international cricketer from India Mohd Kaif also disapproved of the rule. "Difficult to digest this more boundary rule. Something like sudden death - continuous super overs till a result is a better solution. Understand, wanting a definite winner but sharing a trophy is better than deciding on more boundaries. Very tough on New Zealand."
Bryan Waddle, veteran radio broadcaster of New Zealand, described the rule awarding the trophy to England as a 'T20 gimmick.'
Mike Hesson, the man who coached New Zealand to the 2015 World Cup final, joined the chorus criticising the ICC for the rules. "Kane Williamson and Eoin Morgan should have jointly lifted the Cricket World Cup after a drama-packed Sunday evening at Lord's. Certainly neither England nor New Zealand deserved to lose such an incredible, seesawing final when they couldn't be split after 50 overs each."
"Using a Super Over to decide it was farcical and the International Cricket Council needs to give itself an uppercut for even entertaining it as a tiebreaker," Hesson wrote in his column for stuff.co.nz.