Nice guys have done it again. And without much fuss, without Super Over drama. New Zealand defeated England by five wickets with one over to spare in their semi-final match of ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2021 in Abu Dhabi, UAE on Wednesday. For many, it's revenge. But not many in the Kiwi camp will endorse such a thought. Daryl Mitchell, who deservingly hit the winning runs, was in control of his celebrations. And come Sunday, they may yet find the occasion worth celebrating. A stunning win for Kane Williamson & Co, who came so close to lifting their first World Cup trophy, albeit in a different format, in 2019 at Lord's. They won the toss and put England in to bat first at Sheikh Zayed Stadium. The 2010 champions set a target of 167 runs thanks to David Malan's 41 off 30 and Moeen Ali's unbeaten 51 off 37. The Kiwis, playing their third semis, started the chase on a poor note, losing Martin Guptill and skipper Williamson inside the third over. But Mitchell (72 not out off 47) and Devon Conway (46 off 38) revived the innings with an 82-run stand in 67 balls. Then came Jimmy Neesham's onslaught, which effectively changed the dynamics of the game. The big-hitting all-rounder played a cameo of 11-ball 27, which included 23 from Chris Jordan's third over. From 110/4 in 16th, New Zealand jumped to 133/4 in a space of six legal deliveries. It then became 147/5 in the 18th even as Neesham left the job unfinished. But Mitchell was there, with his parents cheering his every single run. New Zealand will take on the winners of the second semis between Pakistan and Australia in the final.
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11:21 PM IST: Captains Speak
Eoin Morgan, the losing captain, admits that Jimmy Neesham took the game away from England. "Thought we were right in the game until probably the 17th, 18th overs. We had them exactly where we wanted them up until that point... We're a six-hitting side but we struggled to hit sixes. But we hung in there and posted probably a par score. To come out and hit sixes from ball one like that - full credit to him [Neesham]," Morgan signs off.
Kane Williamson, the winning captain, heaps praise on Daryl Mitchell and Jimmy Neesham: "Mitchell has batted beautifully in a high pressure situation. T20 cricket is a game of small margins. Depending on the surface, the short side - these things can be match-defining... He [Neesham] came out and hit the ball hard, that's what he does. He changed the momentum really. Fantastic knock from Daryll, hit the big shots when it counted."
11:14 PM IST: Player Of The Match
Daryl Mitchell is the player of the match for his unbeaten 72 off 47. He admits, he "couldn't remember what was going on." But he sure was aware of "Neesham's hitting". Mitchell also thanks his father.
"With what's going on around the world right now, it's amazing that my old man travelled half way around the world to watch me play, so this is a proud moment," he sounds emotional.
11:03 PM IST: Result
Mitchell Santner is the new batter. Chris Woakes on with the penultimate over. A double to long on, then a six over long on boundary as Daryl Mitchell unleashes another biggie. And another one, this one over deep mid-wicket boundary. Kiwis need 6. One hit. A single to square leg. Mitchell sure going for another. Gets a top edge. Another single, and Mitchell hits the winning runs, a four to square leg. Deserved. He remains unbeaten on 72 off 47. NZ - 167/5 (19); ENG - 166/4 (20)
10:55 PM IST: 20 In 12
Adil Rashid with his final over. A dot, then Jimmy Neesham hits the second for a six over the midwicket boundary. A single, then Daryl Mitchell launches the fourth for a six over, long on. Fifty in 41 balls for Mitchell. What a time. A single, and Neesham hits straight to Eoin Morgan at cover. He goes for 27 off 11. 14 from the over. 1/39 for Rashid. New Zealand need 20 runs in 12 balls. NZ - 147/5 (18)
10:50 PM IST: 34 In 18
Chris Jordan returns for his third over. He misses the length, and is hit for a six over square leg by Jimmy Neesham. Two leg byes. A wide. Then, a four to long on. 13 from the over with three balls remaining in the over. A wide outside off, a very very wide wide. Then, something... everything's happening. A slower ball and Neesham launches it. Looks like a sliding Jonny Bairstow pulls it inside, but his flailing knee touches the rope at long on. The soft signal is out. But Neesham survives. A couple more. 23 from the over. New Zealand need 34 runs in 18 balls. NZ - 133/4 (17)
10:41 PM IST: 57 In 24
Liam Livingstone is all over Daryl Mitchell. Three dots, then a single to mid-wicket. Jimmy Neesham gets his first strike. A wide. And a single. Three runs and a wicket. Game-changing over? His figures: 2/22. New Zealand need 57 runs in 24 balls. NZ - 110/4 (16)
10:38 PM IST: Four Down
Part-timer Liam Livingstone on with his final over. And he strikes first ball. Glenn Phillips (2 off 4), caught by Sam Billings at long off. Jimmy Neesham is the new man. NZ - 107/4 (15.1)
10:36 PM IST: 60 In 30
Mark Wood returns for his last over. Two dots and a double to backward point as Daryl Mitchell slices the third. A top-edge and a four to fine leg. Two singles to end the over. Ten from it. Wood's figures: 0/34. New Zealand need 60 runs in 30 balls. NZ - 107/3 (15)
10:30 PM IST: 70 In 36
Glenn Phillips is the new man. Five runs from Liam Livingstone's third over. New Zealand need 70 runs in 36 balls. NZ - 97/3 (14)
10:27 PM IST: Four Down
Liam Livingstone continues and he breaks the 81-run stand in 66 balls. Devon Conway (46 off 38) is stumped off the fourth ball. 48 runs in the last 30 balls. NZ - 95/3 (13.4)
10:24 PM IST: 74 In 41
Adil Rashid with his third over. And the 'hang-time' is back. Brilliant effort from a leaping Chris Jordan at long off boundary to drag the ball but it lands on the rope. A six. 12 from the over. New Zealand need 74 runs in 41 balls. NZ - 92/2 (13)
10:19 PM IST: 87 In 48
Liam Livingstone with his second over. Devon Conway, hits the fifth ball for a four, through extra cover. Seven from the over. New Zealand need 87 runs in 48 balls. NZ - 80/2 (12)
10:15 PM IST: 94 In 54
Mark Wood resumes post-drinks action. Daryl Mitchell hits the first ball for a four. Drilled straight. Two singles then a no-ball for the front foot. Free hit. And Mitchell fails to connect. A quick single, to the wicketkeeper. Devon Conway comes down and carves away over backward point for a six. 15 from the over. 60-run stand in 8.2 overs. New Zealand need 94 runs in 54 balls. NZ - 73/2 (11)
10:08 PM IST: Drinks
Bowling change. Liam Livingstone with his leg-break. A dot to Devon Conway, then a single to cover. Another single, and a lofted shot to extra cover from Conway for a couple. And a four, down the ground. First boundary in 23 balls. Eight from the over. New Zealand need 109 runs in 60 balls. NZ - 58/2 (10)
0:03 PM IST: 50 Up
Mark Wood with his second over. A dot then a single as Devon Conway plays the second to fine leg. A dot Daryl Mitchell, then two singles. A double to long on to end the over. Five from the over. NZ - 50/2 (9)
9:59 PM IST: Quiet Overs
Adil Rashid continues. Two dots to Daryl Mitchell, and four singles. Nine in the last two overs. 32 run-a-ball stand between Mitchell (18 off 17) and Devon Conway (17 off 15). NZ - 45/2 (8)
9:55 PM IST: Wood On
Double bowling change. Mark Wood on. He's operating on higher 140s, even touching 149kph. Five from the over. NZ - 41/2 (7)
9:51 PM IST: Powerplay Over
Bowling change. Adil Rashid on and he is welcomed with a four by Devon Conway, through covers. A four to end the over. Conway comes down and beats the mid-off. 10 from the over. NZ - 36/2 (6)
9:46 PM IST: Mitchell Four
Chris Woakes continues. Three on the trot (3-1-8-2). Daryl Mitchell hits the second ball for a four, behind square. Eight from the over. NZ - 26/2 (5)
9:41 PM IST: Breaking The Shackles
Chris Jordan continues. Three dots, then a wide. No answer from Devon Conway. A four, one bounce to long off boundary. Conway lofts it over extra cover to break the shackles. Five from the over. In the previous over, Woakes produced a wicket-maiden. NZ - 18/2 (4)
9:35 PM IST: Williamson Goes
Chris Woakes continues and he gets the big fish. Kane Williamson caught by Adil Rashid at short fine leg. Top edge. Williamson goes for 5 off 11. Devon Conway is the new man. NZ - 13/2 (2.4)
9:31 PM IST: Tidy Over
Chris Jordan shares the new ball. Five from the over. In the first over, Chris Woakes conceded eight runs for the one wicket. NZ - 13/1 (2)
9:23 PM IST: Guptill Goes
Chris Woakes with the new ball. Martin Guptill hits the first ball for a four, over extra cover. And a hint of a swing. Guptill misses the second. Woakes then gets the wicket. Guptill mistimes his flick and a leading edge. Caught at mid-on by Moeen Ali. He goes for 4 off 3. Kane Williamson is the new man. NZ - 4/1 (0.3)
9:11 PM IST: Innings Break
Moeen Ali hits the third ball for a four to long off and his maiden T20 World Cup fifty, in 36 balls. A single and Eoin Morgan gets strike. A wide. A bouncer and Morgan fails to time his hook. A couple to backward square leg. A slice and Morgan is dropped by Gleen Phillips at deep backward point. And England add a couple more. 11 from the over. 56 runs and two wickets in the last five overs. ENG - 166/4 (20)
9:06 PM IST: Four Down
James Neesham with the last over. Moeen Ali takes a single off the first, to long off. And the wicket. Liam Livingstone (17 off 10) holes out at long-off, caught by Mitchell Santner. Eoin Morgan is the new man, Four balls more... ENG - 156/4 (19.2)
9:05 PM IST: 0/41 For Boult
Trent Boult with his final over. Liam Livingstone hits the third for a four to long-off. Nine from the over. Boult's figures: 0/41. 39-run stand in 22 balls for Moeen Ali (45 off 34) and Liam Livingstone (17 off 9). ENG -155/3 (19)
9:00 PM IST: 1/31 For Milne
Adam Milne with his final over. Moeen Ali hits the first ball for a six, over the mid-wicket boundary. And a massive six from Liam Livingstone, over the bowler's head. 16 from the over. Milne's figures: 1/31. ENG - 146/3 (18)
8:54 PM IST: 1/32 For Sodhi
Ish Sodhi with his final over. Moeen Ali hits the second for a six, over mid-wicket. 11 from the over. Sodhi's figures: 1/32. ENG - 130/3 (17)
8:50 PM IST: 1/24 For Southee
Nine runs from Tim Southee's final over for figures of 1/24. 41 runs and one wicket in the last 30 balls. ENG - 119/3 (16)
8:46 PM IST: Malan Goes
Tim Southee on with his final over. David Malan welcomes back the pacer with a six, over deep mid-wicket. But Southee hits back. Faintest of nicks and caught behind. Malan goes for 41 off 30. And with that, a 63-run stand is broken. Liam Livingstone is the new batter. ENG - 116/3 (15.2)
8:44 PM IST: ALi Survives
Trent Boult returns for his third. A couple off the first as Moeen Ali plays it to mid-wicket. Then a skier. A diving Tim Southee just misses the ball at mid-off. Ali hits the fourth ball for a four to fine leg. 10 from the over. ENG - 110/2 (15)
8:39 PM IST: 100 Up
Adam Milne with his third over. Six runs from it - four singles and a couple. 40 runs in the last 30 balls. 47-run stand in 35 for Dawid Malan (34 off 26) and Moeen Ali (17 off 17). ENG - 100/2 (14)
8:35 PM IST: Moeen First Boundary
Ish Sodhi on with his third over. A wide, then three singles. A dot, then a single. Moeen Ali dismisses the last ball, a full toss, for a tour to deep backward point. Nine from the over. ENG - 94/2 (13)
8:31 PM IST: Stunning Effort
Adam Milne returns for his second over. Glenn Phillips denies David Malan a certain four off the second. Brilliant effort at deep. Three from it. Ans seven from the over. 40 runs and one wicket in the last five overs. ENG - 85/2 (12)
8:26 PM IST: Malan Takes Charge
Glenn Phillips on with his first over. A single as Moeen Ali plays a lofted shot to long off. David Malan times his inside out perfectly for a four, then a dot. Another four. Same shot, same area. Two more singles and 11 from the over. ENG - 78/2 (11)
8:20 PM IST: Drinks
Another bowling change. James Neesham on. David Malan hits the last ball for a four, through extra cover. Seven from the over. In the previous over, Ish Sodhi conceded seven runs, including a four off the last ball, hit by David Malan. ENG - 67/2 (10)
8:12 PM IST: Buttler Goes
Ish Sodhi continues and he strikes first ball. Jos Buttler (29 off 24), LBW. England also waste review. Hitting off stump. Reverse sweep doing the damage. Moeen Ali is the new batter. ENG - 53/2 (8.1)
8:09 PM IST: 50 Up
Double bowling change. Mitchell Santner on. David Malan takes a single off the first, a dot, then Jos Buttler reverse sweeps the third for a four. In control. A double to fine leg. Eight from the over. ENG - 53/1 (8)
8:06 PM IST: Spin On
Bowling change. Five singles from Ish Sodhi's first over. 16 runs from the last three. Jos Buttler on 22 off 18 and David Malan on 4 off 7. ENG - 45/1 (7)
8:01 PM IST: Powerplay Over
Dawid Malan joins Jos Buttler in the middle. And he takes a single off the second ball of the over. A dot, then a single for Buttler. Three runs and a wicket from Adam Milne's first over. ENG - 40/1 (6)
7:56 PM IST: First Wicket
Bowling change and Adam Milne strikes first ball. Kane Williamson takes a beauty at mid-on and the soft signal is out. Jonny Bairstow goes for 13 off 17. ENG - 37/1 (5.1)
7:54 PM IST: Southee Continues
Third on the trot for Tim Southee. Jonny Bairstow lofts the second ball over the bowler's head for a four. Eight runs from the over. ENG - 37/0 (5)
7:49 PM IST: Big Over
Trent Boult continues. Jos Buttler hits the first two balls for fours, through mid-off and through covers. A dot, then five wides. The bouncer beats everyone. A double to mid-off, and a single to end the over. 16 from the over. ENG - 29/0 (3)
7:44 PM IST: Quite Start
Tim Southee continues. Single off the second ball as Jos Buttler plays it to cover. And four dots to Jonny Bairstow. ENG - 13/0 (3)
7:40 PM IST: Lucky Bairstow
Trent Boult shares the new ball with Tim Southee. Jonny Bairstow survives an inside edge off the last ball, and a four to fine leg. Six runs from the over. ENG - 12/0 (2)
7:35 PM IST: Buttler Timing
Tim Southee with the new ball. Jos Buttler takes a single off the first, then a dot. Another quick single as Jonny Bairstow rotates to strike. Two dots and flick for a four, to deep square leg. Very quick outfield. Six runs from the over.
7:23 PM IST: Tribute
A moment of silence in memory of Mohan Singh, Abu Dhabi's Indian curator who died earlier this week.
It will be followed by the National Anthems.
7:14 PM IST: Captains Speak
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson: "England has a lot of depth, that's their strength, and we have the opportunity to play our own brand of cricket to make it to the final."
England captain Eoin Morgan: "We can't take New Zealand lightly at all, they've been playing semi-finals and finals for a lot longer than we have, so we'll have to play out of our skins to beat them. Looking forward to a great contest today."
7:08 PM IST: Playing XIs
One change for England. Sam Billings comes in for injured Jason Roy. Jonny Bairstow to open with Jos Buttler. Here are the playing XIs
England: Jos Buttler (wk), Jonny Bairstow, Dawid Malan, Moeen Ali, Eoin Morgan (c), Sam Billings, Liam Livingstone, Chris Woakes, Chris Jordan, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood.
New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Daryl Mitchell, Kane Williamson (c), Devon Conway (wk), Glenn Phillips, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner, Adam Milne, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult.
7:03 PM IST: Toss
New Zealand win the toss and bowl first against England. They are unchanged.
6:42 PM IST: Head-to-head
This is a repeat of the 2016 semifinal in Delhi, where England humbled New Zealand by seven wickets. England have won 12, lost seven, tied one and abandoned one in their 21 T20 International matches played against New Zealand. In the last meeting, England beat New Zealand (in Super Over).
England: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Chris Jordan, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, James Vince, David Willey, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, Tom Curran, Reece Topley.
New Zealand: Kane Williamson (c), Todd Astle, Trent Boult, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Martin Guptill, Kyle Jamieson, Daryl Mitchell, James Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Adam Milne.