T20 World Cup Eng v New Zealand (Semi-Final)
Grahame Smith reports on T20 World cup final in India. Exclusively for Comicus
So after England’s triumph against Sri Lanka in their final group game, we returned to the Feroze Shah Kotla stadium in Delhi for the ICC T20 World Cup Semi-Final for England versus New Zealand.
This is indeed great for those few England supporters who opted for Delhi as their Semi-final venue of choice, arguably not so good for those fans that plumped for Mumbai for their Semi-final as they will get to see the (not unattractive) shoot-out between India and the West Indies.
At the Kotla there were a large number of Indian fans who, having gambled that their team would be playing their Semi there, now had the dilemma of who to cheer on. England or the Kiwis ? From the cheers ringing around the ground during the ever more sports ticketed warm-up routines it seemed that to follow England was marginally becoming the preferred choice – principally on the grounds that the Indians had concluded that they would prefer not to play New Zealand in the final having already been beaten by them in the group stages.
The game got underway under the floodlights with nigh on 30,000 fans cheering each moment of the action with great and ever-building excitement each time the ball went to or over the boundary ropes. The pitch was surrounded by four sets of four drummers who at the end of every five overs would energetically bash out a pulsing rhythm which was immediately latched onto by increasingly worked up fans. Even better was the regular ” Chance to Dance ” slots where the crowd were encouraged to dance to bursts of music in the hope that they would be picked up by some of the roving cameramen for displaying on the Big Screen. Close to us was one particular individual who had completely mastered these dance routines and soon had the rest of the crowd in our part of the ground standing and admiring him as he pulled his Bollywood shapes- together with appropriate facial gestures. It was fantastic to behold and now easy to understand how John Travolta must have felt when finding himself in a similar position on the dance floor in Saturday Night Fever.
As for the game; England, to the surprise of many, through a combination of tight “death” bowling by Jordan and Stokes and explosive opening batting from Roy and Stokes, ran out comfortable winners by seven wickets and will now face the West Indies in the final after their triumph in Mumbai. Roll on the final.
Grahame has been Honorary Company Secretary of Comicus Limited since its formation. Professionally he is a finance and corporate governance specialist having worked in senior roles for a variety of organisations in the UK not for profit sector, most recently with the University College of Estate Management. He is keen follower of most sports and enjoys the experience of watching live sporting action. He has an aim to see a competitive match at all 92 of the English Premier and Football leagues as well as a competitive game of cricket at each of the 18 principal English county grounds. He is fascinated by all aspects of cricket having never played it and having been born in Bucks, which could be argued to be the most minor of the minor counties.