Cricket World Cup: 'This was a stunning, surprising, unexpected win by New Zealand'

7:25 am on 11 July 2019

Sports media around the world have praised New Zealand's shock victory over India to reach the Cricket World Cup final, saying the Black Caps have produced the bowling performance of the tournament.

New Zealand's James Neesham (L) celebrates after taking the final wicket of India's Yuzvendra Chahal and winning the 2019 Cricket World Cup first semi-final between New Zealand and India at Old Trafford in Manchester, northwest England, on July 10, 2019.

Jimmy Neesham celebrates the fall of India's final wicket Yuzvendra Chahal. Photo: AFP

Read more:

  • Look back at how the match unfolded with RNZ's live commentary
  • Black Caps beat India to reach Cricket World Cup final
  • "Make no mistake, this was a stunning, surprising, unexpected win by New Zealand, with India heavily tipped from the start to win the tournament," said BBC reporter Amy Lofthouse.

    "With play going into the reserve day after rain ended play on Tuesday, the bowlers were superb up front, defending what seemed to be meagre target.

    "[Trent] Boult swung the ball, Matt Henry and Lockie Ferguson bowled with pace and Martin Guptill and Jimmy Neesham produced two outstanding bits of fielding to put New Zealand into the final."

    New Zealand's captain Kane Williamson (L) greets India's captain Virat Kohli at the end of play during the 2019 Cricket World Cup first semi-final between New Zealand and India at Old Trafford in Manchester, northwest England, on July 10, 2019.

    Kane Williamson speaking to Virat Kohli at the end of the match. Photo: AFP

    She added that it was a credit to the Black Caps that they were able to keep their nerve in the final tense overs, and the swing their bowlers obtained will be a worry to either Australia or England in the final at Lord's.

    The Guardian's blogger Simon Burnton said it was an unforgettable match that was turned around by the devastating new-ball burst from Player of the Match Matt Henry and Trent Boult.

    "The book will always say that New Zealand beat India by 18 runs in the first semi-final of the 2019 World Cup. But you'd need thousands and thousands of words to tell the full story of a marvellous, nuanced match. It placed unreasonable demands on the brain, gut, heart, nerves, eyes and soul - and that's just for the neutral supporters.

    "At the end of it all, New Zealand are in the World Cup final again."

    "It was a bona fide classic - subtle as a Test match at times, unbearably dramatic at others."

    He also said Martin Guptill's run-out of Indian batsman MS Dhoni was "the champagne moment of tournament so far".

    James Dutton in the Daily Mail said it was a thriller. "What an extraordinary match and a result I don't think anyone predicted yesterday let alone this morning."

    Sri Lanka's commentator Russel Arnold said the Black Caps had the best bowlers and fielders.

    Indian cricket fans burn posters of Indian cricket players during a protest in reaction to the  national cricket team poor performance during the first semifinal between India and New Zealand at Old Trafford in Manchester of the 2019 ICC World Cup, in Amritsar June 10, 2019.

    Cricket fans in Amritsar in India burn a poster of their team after their shock exit from the Cricket World Cup. Photo: AFP

    In India, where cricket is a national passion, there is disbelief with former greats saying it was a mistake to play Dhoni too far down the order.

    Former international batsman VVS Laxman said it was a "tactical blunder" for which India paid a high price.

    And Virender Sehwag described it as "a case of so near yet so far".

    Indian media were especially severe in their criticism, with the Hindustan Times lamenting Kohli for his captaincy and the Times of India slamming the team's "45 minutes of bad cricket" in which they lost four wickets early in the run chase.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi was among those who expressed his disappointment.

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