Ken Williamson after New Zealand’s elimination in the T20 World Cup semi-finals
New Zealand’s rickety captain Ken Williamson said he lost the T20 Globalism The cup semi-final was a “difficult pill to swallow” but he admitted his team were not disciplined enough to challenge superior Pakistan in Sydney on Wednesday.
Last edition runners-up New Zealand were overtaken in the semi-finals by Pakistan, who put in a clinical display to secure a comfortable seven-wicket win to reach the T20 World Cup Final for the third time.
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“Very disappointing for not making Pakistan work harder. They were great. We were outdone. It’s a tough pill for us to swallow. Babar (Azzam) and (Muhammad) Rizwan put us under pressure,” Williamson said during the post-match presentation.
Pakistan first restricted New Zealand to 152 for four on a slow track from the SCG and then chased after the target with ease, riding captain Babar and Rizwan in the fifties attacking to book their place in the T20 World Cup Final 13 years later.
We got pressured early on. Pakistan was walking around very nicely. We managed to regain some momentum with an incredible kick from (Daryl) Mitchell. Halfway through we were feeling it was a competitive total. “The wicket was a bit tricky deck — used,” Williamson said.
New Zealand did not have the momentum after losing their opening matches – Finn Allen (4) and Devon Conway (21) – early. Williamson (46) and Mitchell (53) then added 68 runs to the fourth wicket to take them to a decent total.
“If we’re honest, we wanted to be more disciplined in our areas. At the end of the day, Pakistan definitely deserves to be a winner. There was a lot of good cricket,” said the kiwi captain.
“Throughout Robben’s run, we played well. Today we weren’t at our best. Having said that, we know the choppy nature of T20 cricket.”
Pakistan national team captain Babar Azam praised the bowling players for the victory.
“The way the team has performed in the last three games…Thanks to the crowd, we feel like we are playing at home. We had a good start in the first six overtakes and after that we had a good spin attack,” said Babar, who scored 42 balls and 53.
“Our plan before going inside was to take advantage of the first six sums, and then everyone can come and participate. We will enjoy this moment, but at the same time we will focus on the final.”
Redouane, who was awarded the Man of the Match award for his 57 ball, said he and Babar did not stop believing, despite their struggles to run in the group stages of the ongoing tournament.
“Fortunately, 50 was in the semi-finals. Babar and I were struggling but we worked hard and believed. We kept fighting. When we crossed the border line, we decided to turn the attack on the new bowlers.”
“When we finished the powerplay, we knew one of us had to hit deep because it was a tough playing field. Our start (to the tournament) wasn’t good, but the players kept believing.”
Pakistan will now face the winner of the second semi-final on Thursday between India England in the final in Melbourne on Sunday.
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