Remember when the World Cup started? It feels like a long while ago, when most of the cricketing world was wondering about when the first 500-plus ODI score would be made, Virat Kohli was peering into his crystal ball and declaring 250 would be hard enough to chase, and Sir Viv Richards was smashing it to all parts of the Mall in central London during the opening ceremony.
Here's the story of a long, memorable tournament, told through the eyes of social media.
While every other expert was predicting semi-finalists and winners, Brendon McCullum went many steps further and put out his results for every game of the league phase. He even predicted the impact rain would have on the tournament.
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World Cup game by game predictions. 4 teams will fight out the 4th qualifying spot and net run rate will decide who progresses. Rain and luck will likely play a part as well. I hope Nz gets that little bit of luck and can qualify. Enjoy the 6 week celebration of the best players on the planet. #CWC2019
The other Pakistan turned up for their first game against West Indies, for a good reason, as we found out soon enough.
Great bowling against the Pakistani batsmen. This sort of planning is needed every game. Well done!— Brian Lara (@BrianLara) May 31, 2019
.#MenInMaroon #Windies #iccworldcup2019 #Excellent #bowling #WIvsPAK #WorldCup2019 #Pakistan #CricketWorldCup @cricketworldcup pic.twitter.com/v1c0vpIFPm
Ben Stokes and Co finished eighth in the Under-19 World Cup eight years ago. How far could they go this time, at home?
These two were welcomed by fans dressed as sandpaper sheets in Bristol.
England were favourites, and they hadn't lost chasing at home for 20 successive games, but none of that mattered, because they were facing the other Pakistan.
Good bounce back from, Pakistan #CWC19— Chris Gayle (@henrygayle) June 3, 2019
In one of the lines of the tournament, Pakistan bowling coach Azhar Mahmood had said, "England have to play 300 balls to get to that record, but we have to bowl ten good balls to get ten wickets." Turns out he was off by a ball.
Congratulations PAKISTAN. I said 10 good balls you guys did it in 9 ! ;) fantastic from each one of you. Keep the self belief and passion. Guys Keep supporting them - we need the fans to back them ! Eid Mubarak to you all !— Azhar Mahmood (@AzharMahmood11) June 3, 2019
AB de Villiers wasn't even at the World Cup, but news about his near return from retirement sent shock waves through the cricket world.
All that's important is that we should all focus on supporting the team at the World Cup. There is a long way to go and I believe the boys can still go all the way #ProteaFire— AB de Villiers (@ABdeVilliers17) June 6, 2019
Twitter superstar Jimmy Neesham turned it on with the ball, picking up his first five-wicket haul in international cricket. The self-deprecation that followed was just as good.
I've always been a 5 wicket taking bowler, it just usually takes me seven games https://t.co/bLF46bAAbZ— Jimmy Neesham (@JimmyNeesh) June 9, 2019
A high-profile retirement came early in the tournament, just as India were finding their range in a World Cup.
Everyone said it at the start of the World Cup, but Michael Vaughan served a mid-tournament reminder, in case you'd missed it.
As many as four games were washed out in the space of a week, one of them being the New Zealand-India encounter. Neesham's gesture to disappointed fans at Trent Bridge came in for praise on social media, before...
They were actually Kane's gloves pic.twitter.com/hsf5bchwj1— Jimmy Neesham (@JimmyNeesh) June 14, 2019
The memes were out in full force. Maybe rain had dropped the World Cup?
India-Pakistan was just around the corner. Not everyone had to pick one side, as Chris Gayle reminded us.
India v Pakistan at Old Trafford wasn't entirely one-sided, but it wasn't quite a treat either. Try telling that to the press pack, though.
Apparently 41 kilos of biscuits were eaten in the media centre yesterday during the India-Pakistan game at Old Trafford. That is a lot of custard creams.— Nick Hoult (@NHoultCricket) June 17, 2019
While Indian fans were in overdrive, revelling in the victory over their neighbours, Stokes left a note to everyone reminding them he was getting bored.
I may delete Twitter just so I don't have to see another tweet reading "He's saying Ben Stokes"(when he's clearly not)in reply to a video of Virat saying you know what it was funny the first 100,000 times.— Ben Stokes (@benstokes38) June 16, 2019
Three centuries from Rohit Sharma and the recently retired Yuvraj Singh was predicting that his former India and Mumbai Indians team-mate would go all the way, just like he himself had done in 2011.
Chatting to Rohit at ipl time ! Discussion about getting starts but not getting big runs , and I was like you don't know what lies ahead of you it's happening for a reason ! Same words told to me by @sachin_rt before 2011 wcup , my mos of 2019 prediction from india @ImRo45— yuvraj singh (@YUVSTRONG12) June 16, 2019
Rohit sent a square-cut six flying into the stands. You knew the throwbacks were coming.
We both are from INDIA and in this case, AAMCHI MUMBAI as well....So heads I win, tails you lose! https://t.co/doUMk1QU2b— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) June 17, 2019
His press conference performances were even better. It all started here.
Q: How do you suggest Pakistan batsmen come out of the current crisis?— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) June 17, 2019
Old Trafford cricket ground, Theatre of Dreams. Who knew?
Meanwhile, Bangladesh were motoring along, carried largely by one man's sustained excellence.
Pakistan were smarting after another World Cup defeat to India. Their fans weren't sparing them and players took to social media appealing for calm.
Pls dont use bad words for the players yes u guys can criticise our performance we will bounce back InshAllah we need ur support— Mohammad Amir (@iamamirofficial) June 17, 2019
India's injury scare turned out to be a tournament-ending one. Shikhar Dhawan was on his way home.
I feel emotional to announce that I will no longer be a part of #CWC19. Unfortunately, the thumb won't recover on time. But the show must go on.. I'm grateful for all the love & support from my team mates, cricket lovers & our entire nation. Jai Hind! pic.twitter.com/zx8Ihm3051— Shikhar Dhawan (@SDhawan25) June 19, 2019
Not all great Jofra Archer tweets are from his archives. There was some refreshing candour from him through this tournament as well.
Terrible tweet https://t.co/3ybKo3pKcE— Jofra Archer (@JofraArcher) June 18, 2019
As the league phase was in danger of turning into a dead-rubber-filled snoozefest, Sri Lanka woke everyone up with a shocking win.
Wow Wow Wow— Dimuth Karunaratne (@IamDimuth) June 21, 2019
Today v England Team Work was the winner ... A big salute as well to Angi , Mali, Avishka and Dhana you beauties .. It's starting to happen for Team SL pic.twitter.com/ZVmw5pCO3m
Carlos Brathwaite, remember the name? Ben Stokes sure does. In case you didn't, he served another reminder.
First it was Virat now it's @TridentSportsX is clogging up my mentions,I wonder why???that was a unbelievable innings Carlos thought it was going to be a repeat of 2016 in Kolkata...how good was that game by the way— Ben Stokes (@benstokes38) June 22, 2019
But when West Indies fell agonisingly short of winning against New Zealand, it was Brathwaite who had to be consoled.
Pakistan were back in business and making a late surge for the qualifying spots. Remember when it last happened?
Edgbaston atmosphere, generated by Pakistan's fans, really was electric last night. Incredible atmosphere. Local residents I've spoken to today can't remember a summer evening like it for noise (in a good way)— Ali Martin (@Cricket_Ali) June 27, 2019
England were on the mat after two successive defeats, to Sri Lanka and Australia, and Jonny Bairstow laid into his "critics". Fellow Yorkshireman Vaughan wasn't having any of it.
How wrong can @jbairstow21 be .. Never has England team had so much support but it's you and your team that has disappointed Jonny .. WIN 2 games and you are in the semis .. With this negative, pathetic mindset I… https://t.co/olrefg6IFP— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) June 28, 2019
There were plenty of great catches at this World Cup, but it didn't get better than a full-blooded Steven Smith pull caught at leg gully, and certified by one of the greatest modern-day close-catchers.
Now that is the catch of the tournament from M.Guptill.— Mark Waugh (@juniorwaugh349) June 29, 2019
By this point, the 1992 parallels were getting more uncanny by the day.
South Africa's tournament had few silver linings. Imran Tahir's performance in his final ODI tournament was one of them.
With one injury after another, some former players wondered if something was afoot in the Indian camp.
If Vijay Shankar has a toe niggle and that's the reason not to play why is he running drinks.. No one else there to do that job.. #CWC19— Kartik Murali (@kartikmurali) June 30, 2019
The runs were flowing for David Warner and there was some happy news for him on the personal front too. Newlands seemed a long time ago.
Up in Durham, there was a surprise visitor for West Indies' game against Sri Lanka.
TV broadcasters spotted 87-year-old Charulata Patel blowing a horn and rooting for India during their game against Bangladesh. Soon enough, she became an internet sensation.
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Also would like to thank all our fans for all the love and support and especially Charulata Patel ji. She's 87 and probably one of the most passionate and dedicated fans I've ever seen. Age is just a number, passion takes you leaps and bounds. There was only love and blessings for the whole team in her eyes. What an inspiration. With her blessings, on to the next one.
There were only eight league games in the 1992 World Cup. By the time the ninth game came along in this World Cup, Pakistan were in uncharted waters, having left themselves with too much to do.
To qualify, Pakistan must:— Aatif Nawaz (@AatifNawaz) July 3, 2019
Beat Bangladesh by 311 runs after scoring 350
Beat Bangladesh by 316 runs after scoring 400
Beat Bangladesh by 321 runs after scoring 450
Incidentally. The biggest ODI win in history was by 290 runs.
So that's where we are... #CWC19
Their campaign was over, and so was one of the last surviving international careers from the 20th century.
Today I retire from One Day International cricket. Huge Thank you to all the players I have played with, coaches I have trained under, family, friends, media, and sponsors. Most importantly my fans, I love you all#PakistanZindabad pic.twitter.com/zlYvhNk8n0— Shoaib Malik (@realshoaibmalik) July 5, 2019
Master and protege reunited, less than two months after teaming up to win the IPL.
An honour to play with you and an honour to play against you! LEGEND 🎯 pic.twitter.com/SMjpeOaziV— Jasprit Bumrah (@Jaspritbumrah93) July 6, 2019
Bangladesh's campaign that had promised so much ended up with an unflattering position on the points table.
Bangladesh definitely didn't deserve to finish eighth on the #CWC19 table— Alan Gardner (@alanroderick) July 6, 2019
India bowed out of the World Cup, but not before Ravindra Jadeja had played one the finest knocks in a World Cup semi-final.
Sports has taught me to keep on rising after every fall & never to give up. Can't thank enough each & every fan who has been my source of inspiration. Thank you for all your support. Keep inspiring & I will give my best till my last breath. Love you all pic.twitter.com/5kRGy6Tc0o— Ravindrasinh jadeja (@imjadeja) July 11, 2019
In the black corner, the victors were marching on, on and on to Lord's.
Arguably the most memorable New Zealand performance on the day came from the commentary box, from Ian Smith.
Watch , listen and learn if you fancy getting into this business ... absolutely nailed it .... and one of the greatest blokes on the planet https://t.co/pHC4ZfTmLL— David 'Bumble' Lloyd (@BumbleCricket) July 10, 2019
Is this the end for MS Dhoni? We don't know, but Adam Gilchrist dropped a thank you note in advance.
Only three teams were left in the competition, and pre-match nervousness gave way to full-blown schadenfreude for England fans. Australia's barefoot-walking routine was an unfortunate victim.
The Aussies should try bowling in Barefoot !!!! #CWC19— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) July 11, 2019
The AB de Villiers saga wasn't going away anytime soon.
Dear Indian cricket fans. If you don't want to come to the final anymore then please be kind and resell your tickets via the official platform. I know it's tempting to try to make a large profit but please give all genuine cricket fans a chance to go, not just the wealthy ❤️ 🏏— Jimmy Neesham (@JimmyNeesh) July 12, 2019
The stories of elderly Indian fans enjoying the game were among the most heartwarming of the tournament.
Just like the rest of us, the mothership was so impressed with Bumrah's performance in the world cup, that she decided to mimic his run-up. pic.twitter.com/bJYGUqzJvd— Shanta Sakkubai (@himsini) July 13, 2019
An epic Wimbledon final. A World Cup final for the ages. It was a day to remember for sports fans.
Impossible to flick between the channels here!!! Sweaty hands— AB de Villiers (@ABdeVilliers17) July 14, 2019
Of course, a Jofra tweet had called the ending.
You got your wish Jof https://t.co/IUgygOdkCw— Stuart Broad (@StuartBroad8) July 14, 2019
16 from 6— Carlos Brathwaite (@TridentSportsX) July 14, 2019
Spooky 👽 https://t.co/xiFEegloMT
New Zealand didn't lose the final, didn't lose the Super Over, but went home without a trophy yet again.
Kids, don't take up sport. Take up baking or something. Die at 60 really fat and happy.— Jimmy Neesham (@JimmyNeesh) July 15, 2019
Naturally, there were contrasting emotions from both sides.
Cruel!— Stephen Fleming (@SPFleming7) July 14, 2019
That's a game of cricket!— Jason Roy (@JasonRoy20) July 14, 2019