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Mitchell stunner powers NZ into final


Muscat, Nov 10

Daryl Mitchell played a stellar innings to muscle New Zealand into the final of the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 as they beat England by five wickets in the semifinal in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

Mitchell’s sensational innings of 73 off 48 comprising four boundaries and four sixes and James Neesham’s 28 off 10 balls which had three sixes and a boundary got New Zealand over the line.


Chris Woakes gave England a dream start in their defence of 167 as he got Martin Guptill to chip one to Moeen Ali at mid-on in the first over.

Disaster struck New Zealand in the third over when their skipper Kane Williamson got his ramp shot horribly wrong as he holed out to Adil Rashid at short fine leg.

At 13/2, Devon Conway and Daryl Mitchell had a lot of work to do as New Zealand were up against it in a high-pressure World Cup semifinal.

Conway and Mitchell stitched together a fifty-plus partnership but could not really get the run rate going in a big way.

The run-rate hovered around 6.2 as the required rate touched 10.5 and the task kept getting steeper.

Conway blasted away to 46 off 37 balls before getting stumped by Buttler off Livingstone in the 14th over.

It was then the Mitchell and Neesham Show all the way. James Neesham’s 26 off 10 and Daryl Mitchell’s 73 off 48 took New Zealand home in 19 overs.


England began their innings at a brisk pace thanks to a flurry of boundaries by their main man upfront, Jos Buttler.

Buttler slammed four boundaries and scored at a fast clip to put some pressure on the New Zealand bowlers. However, Jonny Bairstow who was replacing the injured Jason Roy struggled to get going and was eventually out for 13 off 17 balls.

Adam Milne got him out caught by Kane Williamson off the first ball after powerplay.

Buttler kept going for a bit before he became the victim of Ish Sodhi’s guile in the ninth over.

Then followed a xxx-run partnership between Moeen Ali and Dawid Malan. Malan the more aggressive of the two as scored at a strike rate of 120 plus.

England were going at a run rate of 7 plus and needed to up the ante desperately if they harboured intentions of reaching 160 plus.

Malan made his intentions clear as the first six of the England innings came in the 16th over off the bowling of Tim Southee.

Southee hit right back in the very next ball as he got Malan fishing outside the off stump as wicket-keeper Devon Conway snapped him up easy.

At 119/3 after 16 overs, England were in search of a late charge from their celebrated batting stars.

Moeen Ali came to the party in the 17th and 18th overs as he smashed two sixes off Ish Sodhi and Adam Milne to give England some much needed momentum.

Liam Livingstone’s humongous six off the last ball of the 18th over gave England more traction towards the end of their innings.

The match-turning 40-run partnership between Ali and Livingstone came to an end in the 20th over when Livingstone was caught at long off by Mitchell Santner off James Neesham.

Ali brought up his fifty off the next ball with a cracking boundary through the offside as England wrapped up their innings at a very competitive 166/4.

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