Nearly four months have passed since that cliffhanger of a final of the 2019 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup at Lord’s, but Ian Smith, the former New Zealand wicketkeeper, who was the on-air commentator when the dramatic Super Over went down, simply can’t get over the moment.
“I’m over the result, but I don’t think I’m quite over the moment. I think about that day at Lord’s quite a lot. It doesn’t dominate my life, but it will never leave me. You could commentate on sport your whole life and never get a moment like that. My voice will be there forever, I guess. It’s an honor … I just hope I got it right,” Smith said.
Deemed one of the most outstanding one-day internationals of all time, England won “by the barest of all margins” – a boundary count, after both the actual game and the Super Over were tied – as Smith put it on air, to clinch their first-ever 50-over World Cup title.
An excited Smith’s verbal depiction of the action from that day, including the Super Over, has now become part of cricketing folklore. Part of New Zealand’s 1992 World Cup side, Smith saw his side dramatically end as runners-up in a roller-coaster battle, alongside Nasser Hussain and Ian Bishop in the commentary box.
“None of us in the box could believe what we had just been a part of. I went back to my hotel, the Danubius across the road, with Simon Doull [ex-Kiwi pacer]. We chatted to fans on the way, and then I slept through till morning. I was drained. And I was just so disappointed for the New Zealand players. It was their time … but it wasn’t. We never lost the game. We just didn’t win it,” he added.