New Zealand became the first team to qualify in the semifinals of the 8th edition of the T20 world cup with 35 run win over Ireland. Kane Williamson returned to form with a fine of 61 off 35. Batting first, New Zealand posted 185 after a loss of six wickets.
In reply, the Irish team could only score 150 in 20 overs. Ireland had a great start with openers adding 68 runs together but after that, all the wickets fell like a pack of cards.
Kiwi speedster Lockie Ferguson was the highest wicket-taker scalping three Irish batters. Paul Stirling was the highest scorer for Ireland with 37 runs.
New Zealand Innings
Ireland won the toss and Balbirnie invited New Zealand to bat first. The kiwi team started slowly as the Ireland bowler held their line and length well in the first three overs. After that Finn Allen changed his gears and smacked three consecutive fours on the spinner Delany.
In Adair’s over, Allen hit a four and a six but gave his wicket on outside off delivery. The next four-five overs we slow as Conway wasn’t able to connect and Williamson as usual took his time at the start.
In the tenth over, Williamson hit Fion Hand for four and then Conway smacked him for four and six.
From 30 of 23, he reached his 50 in 32 balls, the same number of balls he took in the 2021 world cup final.
Josh Little’s little moment of magic
In the last few overs, New Zealand lost several wickets and they weren’t able to slog in the business end of the innings. At the beginning of the 19th over, the Kiwi team was in a good position with 174 losing just 3 wickets. However, Josh Little‘s over stopped them to accelerate further.
Little became just the second Irish bowler after Curtis Campher to take a T20i hat trick. He also became the second bowler to take a hat trick in this year’s edition of the t20 world cup. First was Kartik Mayappan.