Australia won their first Twenty20 World Cup by defeating New Zealand by eight wickets in the final at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday. After losing to England in the final in Bridgetown, Barbados in 2010, the Australians could not deny this time because they had shown great batting to chase New Zealand out completely. Mitchell Marsh (unbeaten 77) and David Warner were the chasing stars for Australia and Josh Hazlewood was the standout.
Chasing a tough target of 173, the Aussies outscored New Zealand with seven balls to spare.
Australia got off to a good start with Warner’s double boundary. However, Aaron Finch’s fight for the top of the order continued as Trent Bolt sent him packing for just five runs.
Mitchell Marsh came down to bat in the fall of Finch’s wicket and immediately hit the ground, hitting a six and a back-to-back four off the first three balls. The Australian all-rounder then looked no further and stepped forward to submit to New Zealand’s bowling lineup.
If Marsh Barrage was not enough, the New Zealand bowlers also had to fight Warner, who also found the boundary at will.
Warner was the first to score his half-century, hitting a six off James Neesham to reach the landmark.
Warner and Marsh added 92 off just 59 balls to give Australia complete control.
Bolt returned to give New Zealand a much-needed breakthrough, removing the dangerous Warner for 53 but Marsh could not be stopped.
All-rounder Australian all-rounder continues to hurt New Zealand bowlers, even half-centuries. He was joined by Glenn Maxwell, who took a few deliveries to get started, as well as before closing.
Marsh and Maxwell kept looking for boundaries as New Zealand could not find any way to keep the Australian batsmen calm.
In the end, Maxwell finished the third man with a reverse ramp to cheer the team on.
Earlier, Martin Guptill and Daryl Mitchell gave a strong start to New Zealand. Mitchell, who was New Zealand’s hero in the semi-final against Pakistan, failed to replicate his performance and was dismissed for 11 by Josh Hazlewood.
Guptill and captain Ken Williamson set New Zealand’s innings but did so at the cost of a run-rate. The pair moved slowly and the Australian bowlers held things tight.
But everything changed when Hazelwood threw Williamson, batting for 21, deep. Williamson suddenly stepped on the accelerator and blew up the Australian attack. The New Zealand captain continued to attack the Australians after losing to Guptill.
Stylish right-hander Mitchell Starc was knocked out as New Zealand zoomed in on a big total. Hazelwood replaced Glenn Phillips and Williamson in the same over. Williamson hit 85 off just 48 balls, one of the most memorable innings of any Twenty20 World Cup.
James Neesham fired some late as New Zealand scored 172 for four in their 20 overs.
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