Twitter Reactions: Jos Buttler, bowlers shine as England claim crucial victory against New Zealand

England, Australia, and New Zealand have one more game to play and all three have five points to their name

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England Cricket Team
England Cricket Team. (Photo Source: Albert Perez/Getty Images)

The 33rd match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 saw the in-from and unbeaten New Zealand lock horns with England, who were in dire need of a win. England’s previous clash against Australia was abandoned, which made this game even more critical. The Jos Buttler-led side managed to ease past the Kiwis and handed them their first defeat to bag the vital two points, which helped them keep their semi-final hopes alive.

After failing in the previous games, England openers Jos Buttler and Alex Hales enjoyed a good time against New Zealand as they got their team off to a flying start. Buttler bagged a half-century, and he couldn’t have asked for a better way to celebrate his 100th T20I international match. The duo put up a brilliant 81-run opening stand before Hales was dismissed by Mitchell Santner, who got the Kiwis their first breakthrough.

While Buttler kept going, Moeen Ali lost his wicket cheaply very early in his innings after Ish Sodhi picked him up. Liam Livingstone and Buttler put up a little partnership there for the third wicket, but the former failed to create an impact and had to walk back to the pavilion. Buttler dominated a major part of the innings and scored 73 runs off 47 deliveries before being dismissed in the penultimate over. As a result, England put up a 180-run target for the Blackcaps.

New Zealand handed their first loss of the tournament

The New Zealand bowlers, unlike their previous games, were not that impactful this time and the job was up to the batters this time. New Zealand’s start to the chase did not go their way, as Devin Conway was dismissed cheaply in the second over, courtesy of Chris Woakes. To add to their misery, Sam Curran struck in the powerplay to dismiss Finn Allen and as a result, New Zealand faced two setbacks in the first six overs.

It was then the partnership between skipper Kane Williamson and the in-form Glenn Phillips which helped New Zealand survive the early scare. The duo shared a 91-run partnership for the third wicket before the skipper walked back. Thereon, England bowlers kept picking up wickets at regular intervals, which broke New Zealand’s momentum with the bat. It was a pacers’ day out at The Gabba in Brisbane as Woakes, Curran and Mark Wood kept England’s hopes alive.

Curran managed to get the big wicket of Phillips, which put a halt to New Zealand’s power-hitting. The asking rate kept increasing, and the pressure piled up on New Zealand batters. But in the end, New Zealand’s middle-order batters failed to chase down the total, and England bagged a crucial win in the game. With this win, England continue their campaign in the tournament and keep their semi-final hopes alive, thereby extending New Zealand’s wait of sealing the semi-final berth.

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