Williamson & Co. left to rue bitter uncontrollables

“Laugh or cry, it’s your choice, isn’t it?”Kane Williamson was in admirably phlegmatic mood given his side had just lost a World Cup final by the thinnest of margins. There were plenty of wry smiles from New Zealand’s captain during a press conference littered with references to the moments which turned this game into a classic of its genre, moments of drama which ranged from the wild to the unfathomable.
“I suppose you never thought you would have to ask that question and I never thought I would have to answer it,” Williamson said when asked whether the boundary countback system was a fair way of deciding the final. It was that sort of day.
Despite the smiles and the dry humour, Williamson said he was “gutted” to end up on the losing side for a second consecutive World Cup final. “There’s a lot of disappointment,” he said. “The guys are really feeling it. We know in this game it can be fickle in its nature and as hard as you try, sometimes those cards don’t fall your way and today it ebbed and flowed. But the guys stuck with it beautifully well and they showed that heart and that fight that we have shown throughout this whole campaign.”
There were so many of those moments which didn’t go New Zealand’s way but could have. The four extra runs that came after the ball hit Ben Stokes’s bat as he dived for the crease in the final over attempting to make his ground. The Trent Boult catch of Stokes that went for six after the fielder stepped on the rope. The last-ball run-out in the Super Over which left them one run short of victory. “When it comes down to a tie, you start looking at every single delivery, don’t you?” Williamson said.“Throughout this whole campaign in a lot of my press conferences I have spoken about uncontrollables and there were a couple today that were pretty hard to swallow.” The extra four runs off Stokes’s bat was perhaps the toughest to take given England would have needed seven off the last two balls without it rather than the three they ended up needing and getting. “It was a pretty tough pill to swallow when we were looking pretty likely with Trent bowling really, really well, so one of those things,” Williamson said.
Perhaps, also, New Zealand might have got another 20 or 30 runs for their bowlers to work with. There were some soft dismissals and hardly any of their batsmen really got going, leaving them short of what they really wanted. “We wanted 250, 260,” said Williamson.