Australia lifted their maiden T20 World Cup trophy with a commanding eight-wicket win over New Zealand in the title clash which was rendered one-sided by Mitchell Marsh with his blistering 77-run knock, on Sunday. New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson top-scored for the Black Caps with his 85-run knock while opener Martin Guptill contributed 28 runs after Australia inserted them in to take first strike.
Pacer Josh Hazlewood (3/16) took three out of four wickets while leg-spinner Adam Zampa (1/26) accounted for one Australian batsman. Opener David Warner’s 38-ball 53 and Marsh’s 50-ball unbeaten 77 meant that Australia overhauled the target with consummate ease in 18.5 overs.
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Australia coach Justin Langer said that the feeling of winning the big one was ‘difficult to explain’. He also explained how Australia players dealt with the bubble life and found success.
“In these situations, when everyone’s talking about bubble, these guys have had so much fun on and off the ground. In this form of game, it’s important to have fun and enjoy, the guys have done that. I think that was a really important part of the success here. Zamps (Adam Zampa) puts a smile on my face every time because he’s a little bit different and he’s a little bit hippie but he’s so competitive, he’s been so good in this form of the game. We see leg-spinners having an impact around the world and he’s doing that for Australia. Josh Hazlewood – he didn’t play the last one-day WC because he had some back issues. He’s been sublime here, it’s been a great team effort,” Langer said.
Australia skipper Aaron Finch said, “This is huge. We are very proud to be the first Australian team to be able to do it. We knew our backs were against the wall. We had some great individual performances, some great team performances. Can’t believe people wrote Warner off saying he was done. That’s when he plays his best cricket. It was almost like poking the bear. The player of the tournament for me is Zampa. Mitch Marsh – what a way to start his innings today. Wade coming into this game with an injury cloud but got a job done. Stoinis did the business.”
It was another heartbreak for the Kiwis as captain Kane Williamson congratulated Australia on a job well done. “It was nice to build some partnerships and get what we thought was a competitive total only to be chased superbly by Australia. They’re a fantastic side. We certainly made every effort and the guys came out and committed to their plans. I am really proud of our team’s efforts throughout. We came here in the final and gave it our best shot but it wasn’t enough. Conditions varied a lot from venue to venue but we adjusted well. It was nice to get to the big dance and all credit to Australia. Today, they really turned it on. We had high hopes coming into this game and it’s never nice losing. But winning and losing are two possible outcomes,” he said.
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