New Zealand Captain Kane Williamson Says His Team Showed Great Heart In "Devastating" World Cup Final Loss
New Zealand matched England's score of 15 in Super Over but in gut-wrenching fashion lost the final as England scored more boundaries in the match.
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, who was adjudged player of the tournament, said his team showed great heart to reach their second consecutive World Cup final, adding the players were shattered after coming so close to winning their maiden crown. Electing to bat, New Zealand put up 241/8 in 50 overs. Chasing the target, England rode on Ben Stokes' unbeaten 84 off 98 balls with Jos Buttler also scoring 59. The pair added 110 runs for the fifth wicket to tie the game at 241 all out and take it to a Super Over. In the Super Over, Stokes and Buttler helped England post 15 runs, which New Zealand matched but in gut-wrenching fashion lost the final and the title as England had scored more boundaries in the duration of the match.
"It certainly wasn't one extra run. There were so many moments that could've gone either way, but congratulations to England - they've had an incredible campaign and they deserve it," WIlliamson said at the gala post match presentation ceremony.
"The pitches have been different to what was expected. No 300+ totals as expected. The NZ side showed a great amount of heart to get us to this point, but it just wasn't meant to be.
"The guys are shattered at the moment - it is devastating. It's pretty tough to swallow at this stage. But a fantastic effort from our guys," he said.
During the run chase, a throw from the deep hit Stokes' bat and went for four for which Stokes apologised to Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson.
"It was a shame that the ball hit Stokes' bat, but I just hope it doesn't happen in moments like that. I don't wish to nitpick, just hope it never happens in such moments ever again," Williamson said of the incident.
Stokes immediately got up and apologised with both his hands raised. He later said he would forever be sorry about that to Williamson.
"We were thinking about the overheads. We thought runs on the board - we would have liked 10-20 more. But in a World Cup final this was a competitive total. The bowlers really put the batsmen under pressure. It had to go down to the last ball, and then the last ball of the next little match, but a great match all round," Williamson said about their total and then the bowling effort.