New Zealand cricket team have been awarded the MCC’s Christopher Martin-Jenkins Spirit of Cricket Award for 2019 for their sporting conduct in the aftermath of the World Cup final against England. After losing to England in a thrilling final held on July 14 at the Lord’s – regarded as one of the most exciting ODI matches of all time – Kane Williamson’s team displayed an exceptional level of sportsmanship, humility and selflessness in defeat.

MCC President Kumar Sangakkara said: “The New Zealand team are worthy winners of this award. In the heat of battle, they displayed a level of sportsmanship that was fitting for such a fantastic final, and indeed tournament.

“It is a testament to their squad that even after a match that will live long in the memory for the cricket that was played, we are still talking about the spirit of cricket. Their actions deserve this recognition.”

After losing to England in a nerve-wracking ODI World Cup final, Williamson and Co. team displayed an exceptional level of sportsmanship, humility and selflessness in defeat.

On an unforgettable day at Lord’s, England won their first-ever men’s World Cup, as they initially levelled the scores to tie with New Zealand at the end of the 50 overs before going on to tie the Super Over as well — winning the tournament by virtue of striking a higher number of boundaries during their innings.

The Black Caps were widely praised for their sportsmanship in the immediate aftermath of the final, and their exemplary conduct towards opposition players throughout the tournament.

A presentation was made to Williamson during the second Test Match against England at Seddon Park in Hamilton which ended in a draw.

The award has previously been won by: Wayne Madsen of Derbyshire, Sussex’s Luke Wright, Brendon McCullum of New Zealand, Tom Fell of Worcestershire and England’s Anya Shrubsole.

2018’s joint winners were Dan Bowser and Chris Edwards of the England Learning Disability team, who were recognised for their outstanding sporting actions during the team’s tour of the Netherlands.

The CMJ Spirit of Cricket award was created in 2013 by Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) and the BBC in memory of former MCC President and BBC Test Match Special commentator Christopher Martin-Jenkins (“CMJ”), who was passionate about promoting the spirit of the game.