The 2019 World Cup final between England and New Zealand was marred by the overthrow in the final over of the hosts’ chase. With nine runs needed from the last three balls, England scored six from the third-last ball in a bizarre fashion. A throw from Martin Guptill accidentally hit the outstretched bat of a diving Ben Stokes, sending the ball to the boundary.
Ben Stokes was then awarded six overthrows — four for the resulting boundary and two for taking the double. Those six overthrows helped England tie the game as they finished on 241, the same number of runs scored by New Zealand. The super overs also ended in a tie as both the teams scored 15.
England were then handed the World Cup over New Zealand on the virtue of hitting more number of boundaries. Since the conclusion of the game, those six overthrows have become a major point of discussion. The umpires awarded six as Stokes and Adil Rashid were returning for their second run when the overthrow was made. But according to Law 19.8, extra runs are only awarded if the batsmen have crossed when the ball is thrown.
It means that England should only have received five runs off the delivery, leaving them with four to win off two balls. More importantly, Adil Rashid would have been on strike rather than the in-form Stokes. And while the entire cricketing world is busy speculating the ifs and buts after that controversial decision, England pacer James Anderson has revealed that Ben Stokes had appealed to the umpires to overturn their decision.
“The etiquette in cricket is if the ball is thrown at the stumps and it hits you and goes into a gap in the field you don’t run,” Anderson told the BBC’s Tailenders podcast.
“But if it goes to the boundary, in the rules it’s four and you can’t do anything about it. I think, talking to Michael Vaughan who saw him after the game, Ben Stokes actually went to the umpires and said, ‘Can you take that four runs off. We don’t want it’,” he added.