Proud skipper Peter Borren praised his "brave" team for their efforts against India, saying the Netherlands had put themselves in a winning position but lacked the firepower to shock the hosts.
The minnows silenced a big crowd in New Delhi on Wednesday when they had India struggling at 99 for four before the home side battled back to win by five wickets.
"It's been a roller-coaster day, been up and down, up and down and in the end I'm very proud of the guys and the effort that we made in defending what wasn't a really high score against a fantastic batting line-up," said Borren.
"We told everyone before this tournament started that we were going to try and make sure that we had chances to win in every game and I think to be honest we had a chance when India were 99-4 and it only takes a couple of good moments of cricket there and you're right on top," he added.
"We were brave to come back from where we were with the batting. We were brave to come back from where we were after (Virender) Sehwag and (Sachin) Tendulkar's onslaught," said Borren.
The skipper said his players had thrived on the atmosphere in front of a passionate home crowd but had lacked the firepower to finish India off.
The Dutch started their tournament by giving Ashes winners England a real scare before eventually slipping to defeat and went down to heavy losses at the hands of the West Indies and South Africa.
The skipper said it was difficult to talk about progress due to inconsistency during the tournament, though the side had made major strides in recent years.
"To say we're progressing, getting better in every game this tournament, that's not quite right," he said.
"We're inconsistent. It's never easy. We don't get to play at this level very often."
But he added: "The last three years we've made real progress. We've got a full-time coach now, we've got guys who put a lot more time and effort into it."
"We play a lot more cricket, not against full members, which is a shame, but among the associates. There's a lot more cricket and I think we're progressing because of it."
Borren said with easier games to come against Bangladesh and fellow associate nation Ireland, he would back his team to take future chances and "get a win or two on the board."