Twitter Reactions: Mitchell Marsh, Warner and Hazlewood down New Zealand to become T20 World Champions

Twitter Reactions: Mitchell Marsh, Warner and Hazlewood down New Zealand to become T20 World Champions

Williamson's fighting knock of 85 runs went in vain.

Mitchell Marsh and David Warner
Mitchell Marsh and David Warner. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

“Fearless, aggressive batting will be crucial in final.” This is what Justin Langer said ahead of the T20 World Cup final against New Zealand. And boy didn’t his troops respond to his call!  It had to take a special knock to go past what Kane Williamson did for New Zealand on the day and Mitchell Marsh was really special on the day. David Warner and Josh Hazlewood played their part as well but it was that Marsh knock at number three that took Australia over the line comfortably.

But one has to feel for New Zealand who put in their best effort through the tournament, their skipper batted superbly in the final but they just stumbled upon an Australian team on fire. New Zealand have now made it to three finals of the last three limited-overs World Cups and have ended up on the wrong side.

Earlier, the phrase Cometh the hour cometh the man came true in case of Kane Williamson. The New Zealand skipper reserved to play his best knock for the final. After losing the toss, the going got tough from the word go on a pitch that was relatively drier. Daryl Mitchell, the hero of the semi-final, got out early while Martin Guptill never got going before getting out on 28 off 35 deliveries.

However, by the time he got out, Williamson had gotten a life while on 21 with Josh Hazlewood dropping his catch only in the previous over. The Kiwi captain got out going in the same over smashing Mitchell Starc for 19 runs and also got the innings going for his team. New Zealand were 57/1 after 10 overs and the 19-run over off Starc got them the much needed move.

Guptill’s dismissal off Adam Zampa didn’t hurt them much either as Williamson had started his show. It was ‘Batsmanship Personified’ from the Kiwi number three on the day as he kept hurting Australia. He didn’t play a slog and after being 18 off 19 at one stage, he managed to reach his fifty off just 32 deliveries. The man got to his half-century off consecutive sixes off Glenn Maxwell.

It was some smart batting from him attacking Australia’s fifth bowler’s last over of the quota with Maxi bowling three of them. Well, some more elegant batting was yet to come and as if it wasn’t enough earlier in the innings, Starc had to bear the brunt of it yet again. The 16th over witnessed an absolute batting masterclass from Williamson. He literally toyed with the field maneuvering the ball in the gaps churning out boundaries.

22 runs came off that over and New Zealand were set for a grand finish. They had scored 79 runs in 36 balls since the 10th over mark largely thanks to Williamson. But then Australia had Josh Hazlewood who had bowled well with the new ball and would come back and make an impact again. He had dismissed Mitchell earlier but got crucial scalps of Glenn Phillips and Williamson in the 18th over which eventually affected New Zealand’s final push.

They could score 36 runs in last four overs which seem few given the momentum they had after Starc’s 16th over. However, Williamson’s magical knock of 85 runs off 48 balls with 10 fours and three sixes but there was very little contribution from the other end. Nevertheless, they posted 172 runs, the highest team total in a T20 World Cup final, in their 20 overs. Hazlewood was the best bowler for Australia returning with 3/16.

Marsh and Warner lead Australia’s chase

Well, Australia simply had to chase down a record total in a T20 World Cup final to be crowned the Champions. But Trent Boult got their skipper out early with only 15 runs on the board. But that remained the only celebration for the Kiwis for the better part of next 10 overs. Mitchell Marsh came out to bat at three and the man bludgeoned his first ball for a maximum off Adam Milne.

He batted with a strike-rate of 200 for his first 12 balls and that set the tone fore Australia in the chase. David Warner was slow to get going but the left-right combination in the middle made New Zealand’s spin bowlers look ineffective. Boundaries came regularly as the duo added 92 runs for second wicket. It was some clean hitting and fearless batting with the Kiwis not having any answers.

Warner got to his half-century in the process but was castled by Trent Boult to give a ray of hope to his team. Well, but it wasn’t BlackCaps’ night. Mitchell Marsh was playing the best cricket of his life and to say that he timed the ball really well would literally an understatement.

He was so good not mistiming any shot and there was clear in his mind from ball one. Glenn Maxwell came out to bat at four and played a cameo, however, he could do it thanks to Marsh. New Zealand tried their best, but it wasn’t to be for them again after a heartbreaking loss in the final two years ago in a 50-over World Cup final.

Once the required run-rate came below six with five overs to go, it was always going to be Australia and the Men in Yellow made it sure, they didn’t let the opportunity slip. There was a chance in the 17th over but Boult dropped it off his own bowling to let off Marsh. Even if he had taken the catch, it would’ve hardly mattered with Australia coasting.

Eventually, Australia got over the line with more than one over to spare and fittingly, Marsh was in the middle unbeaten on 77 off 50 deliveries experiencing the winning moment for Australia. The memorable scenes followed in their camp but there was despair in the other but New Zealand should have their heads up for once again punching above their weight as they have been one of the most consistent sides across all the formats.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: