New Zealand produced an outstanding effort with to beat India by 18 runs in the semifinal to progress through to the finals of the ongoing ICC World Cup 2019. An excited Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson said it was a great semifinal to play and finish on the winning side.
Happy to be on the winning side: Williamson
Matt Henry and Trent Boult starred with the ball to defend the target set by New Zealand. They removed India’s top-order batters in no time to have them at five for three. Hardik Pandya and Rishabh Pant tried their best but Mitchell Santner was terrific in the middle overs to keep the Kiwis in the game Ravindra Jadeja and MS Dhoni tried their best scoring individual half-centuries but New Zealand bounced back in style to make it to the finals on July 14.
Previously, fifties from Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson helped New Zealand post 239 runs in rain-marred first innings. India bowled well on the first day to restrict the opponents to 211 runs in 46.1 overs with Taylor at the crease before rain stopped the day’s play. The Kiwis focused on singles when play resumed earlier today to add another 28 runs which proved too much for Virat Kohli & Co.
Speaking at the most match press-conference, Kane Williamson said that it was a great semifinal and seemed happy to be on the winning side. He also added that everyone chipped in useful contributions and was happy to see the players play good cricket over the two years.
Yeah, it’s a different playing – the way he had to skin it through the round-robin. Great semi-final over two days and very pleased to be on the right side of it. It was really tough and we had to assess the conditions. Both teams thought it would be high-scoring, we thought we could get 240 and put India under pressure. Lot of contributions from everyone. A lot of it was on the conditions and the rain around. We just wanted to put the ball in the good areas and put pressure on India,” Williamson said.
We just wanted some early wickets and it was great start for the bowlers. We needed to stay in the game for long periods. The way Jadeja and Dhoni were hitting the ball, they were likely to win, but our fielders were then outstanding. A lot of it is to look at what it is. Some of those games are tough and conditions vary throughout the match. We were underdogs coming into the semis… and all these sides have beaten each other. Anything can happen on any day. It was nice to see the guys fight for two days,” Williamson added.