New Zealand beat England by five wickets to advance to the final of the T20 World Cup 2021. In many ways, they gave England a taste of their own medicine as they completed a sweet revenge of the 2019 World Cup. An unbeaten 72 from Daryl Mitchell and a cameo from Jimmy Neesham meant that New Zealand can now dream of winning two ICC titles in a single year.
This was New Zealand’s 11th semi-final, one which took them to their first-ever ICC final. Having played in the 2007 and 2016 semi-final, this was the first T20 World Cup final for Kane Williamson and his men.
The Kiwis won the game with six balls and five wickets to spare as it was ecstasy for one team and agony for another.
England batting first scored 166/4 with Moeen Ali scoring an unbeaten 51. Batting looked difficult with the Kiwi bowlers using slower balls and change-ups from their pacers to keep the batsmen guessing. Jos Buttler scored 29 at the top and Dawid Malan’s 41 proved handy as well.
New Zealand lost two early wickets in the chase. Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson fell in single digits to leave the Kiwis struggling at 13/2. Devon Conway (46) then stitched an 82-run stand to bring the Kiwis in contention. Conway’s wicket in the 14th over gave England hope which was quickly taken away with Neesham’s 10-ball 27 cameo.
In the end, Mitchell kept a cool head to take his side home with 20 needed from 12. He scored 10 in the 19th over itself from Chris Woakes to take his side to the finals.
New Zealand Make First-Ever T20 World Cup Final
Meanwhile, the Twitterverse welcomed New Zealand to their first-ever T20 World Cup final as they did it in some style.
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) November 10, 2021
What a game of cricket
— Carlos Brathwaite (@CRBrathwaite26) November 10, 2021
I am rooting for an NZ double this year: after winning the World Test Championship, to win the T20 WC title would be awesome achievement for a team that stays below the radar in terms of brouhaha, but above most others in terms of heart, hard work, commitment and ambition
— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) November 10, 2021
— Muj R 88 (@Mujeeb_R88) November 10, 2021
— Grant Elliott (@grantelliottnz) November 10, 2021
After reaching the 2015 WC final, 2019 WC final and the World Test Championship final which they won, New Zealand reach another World Cup Final. They are not just a likeable team, but absolute champions. Fantastic win today #ENGvsNZ
— Venkatesh Prasad (@venkateshprasad) November 10, 2021
Brilliant boys!!! What a chase! #NZvENG 🇳🇿
— Brendon McCullum (@Bazmccullum) November 10, 2021
— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) November 10, 2021
Big ups @BLACKCAPS 👏👏 great game ✅
— Herschelle Gibbs (@hershybru) November 10, 2021
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) November 10, 2021
New Zealand making the last three ICC finals in ALL THREE FORMATS is such an incredible achievement.
Just such an impressive group of players in every sense.
— Peter Miller (@TheCricketGeek) November 10, 2021
The fighting spirit of the @BLACKCAPS is Kane Williamson's 12th Man! They are never out of a match until the final ball. Bad luck @englandcricket but on the night @BLACKCAPS had their Spartan spirit in @JimmyNeesh and @dazmitchell47 #T20WorldCup #ENGvNZ @T20WorldCup
— Alan Wilkins (@alanwilkins22) November 10, 2021
Jimmy Neesham , was thinking of quitting the game in 2017 and today playing a match defining innings to help New Zealand qualify for the finals. Never give up is the lesson, Sport is a great teacher #ENGvsNZ https://t.co/z3FIO6IPi2
— VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) November 10, 2021
“It was a challenging surface, with the new ball, and it was two-paced. The way Conway set the platform and Neesh hit a few out of the ground was amazing. We knew one or two good overs would do it, and we got the momentum back thanks to Neesham’s hitting. With what’s going on around the world right now, it’s amazing that my old man travelled half way around the world to watch me play, so this is a proud moment” said Mitchell after the game, whose parents were in the stadium to see his son hogg the limelight.