On 29th December 1997, the World Cup final was played between Australia and New Zealand in front of a massive crowd at Eden Gardens in Calcutta.
Both teams finished comfortably on top of their respective pools and it was no surprise to anyone that these two teams would meet in the final.
“That was an amazing day. The crowd built up steadily through the morning and by the innings break it was a 70,000 strong crowd watching the two best teams in the world fight it out in a World Cup final – both in foreign conditions. The ground was immaculate and the wicket suited our pace attack.” – Belinda Clark
Maia Lewis won the toss for New Zealand and elected to bat. Runs on the board in a final. The bowling of Cathryn Fitzpatrick (1-22), Bronwyn Calver (2-29) Charmaine Mason (2-32) restricted the White Ferns batting. It was a lone hand from Debbie Hockley of 79 that gave New Zealand any chance of a decent score. She had little assistance against the miserly bowling and was finally dismissed in the 47th over. The team was all out for 164 in the 50th over.
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It was steady as she goes for the Aussies. Captain Belinda Clark scored a careful 52 and contributions from Michelle Goszko (37) and Karen Rolton (24) helped the Australians get over the line in the 48th over to win by five wickets. It was the team’s fourth World Cup trophy.
“The lap of honour after the game is one of my fondest memories of a group of players and staff enjoying the moment – the looks on our faces was one of amazement – we couldn’t believe we had achieved our goal in front of so many people.”