The Independent Voice of West Indies Cricket

Rutherford rescues West Indies against New Zealand

Thu, Jun 13, '24


WI World Cup

This was T20 at its very best: played under the floodlights with high stakes, high skill, and high drama. When New Zealand and West Indies were drawn in the group of death, this fixture was earmarked as one of the biggest of this stage. When New Zealand were thrashed by Afghanistan in Guyana, this became close to a knockout match.

The Uriah Butler Highway - the route out of Port-of-Spain - was gridlocked. The Brian Lara Cricket Academy is 50km away from Trinidad and Tobago's capital city, and the afternoon rush hour combined with thousands of cricket fans driving south towards San Fernando brought the country's main road to a standstill. Rightly so: T20 cricket was coming home.

Yes, the format was first played professionally in England and has been turned into a commercial behemoth by India, but Trinidad is T20's spiritual home. This country, with a population of 1.5 million, has produced more of the format's superstars than anywhere else in the world and their success is the source of immense national pride.

Incredibly, this was West Indies' first men's World Cup match in Trinidad, in either format. The 8.30pm start time meant that the venue was nearly full before the toss, filled with West Indies maroon and Trinidad red. Those two colours of shirts formed snaking queues for fried fish and cold beer; they blew their air horns and banged their drums; and they vied for space on the sprawling grass banks on the eastern side of the ground.

Read more at ESPNcricinfo

comments 0 comments