The Cricket World Cup is over. England won. It was an epic final in the One Day International format (50 overs). They tied on the last ball in regulation, won on the last ball of the Super Over. I had never seen any sort of cricket match in any format, prior to the start of this competition. I have had an intense and welcome immersion into this marvelous sport.
The best part of the last six weeks is a welcome break from the internecine bickering of American politics.
World Cup Champion England will not decline an invitation to the White House. No invitation will be proferred. They did have to shake hands with HRH The Duke of York, aka Prince Andrew. And so they did, most graciously. This is Britain, after all.
We saw nations competing who get very little positive exposure in the global media, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and South Africa. Their won-loss records may not have been sterling, but they showed up and played. The stands were filled with loyal fans, who were, well, fans, cheering and exuberant. Much like us. I think this is what Baron de Coubertin had in mind when he founded the Olympics movement.
The world was not suddenly rid of two-legged swine, boars, gilts, and sows. But we didn’t have to think about them as often.
Undergirding the tournament was money, of course. Prize money, like any other professional sport. But in this moment the money didn’t matter. We got to be children again, whether we live in Kabul. Kolkata, Christchurch, Sydney, or Soweto, Richmond-on-Thames or Richmond on The James.
It was so welcome, like Christmas in July.