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Leading by example – Captain Williamson key to New Zealand’s march to final

New Zealand also boast in impressive pace attack in Lockie Ferguson and Trent Boult.

Trent Boult, centre, has had plenty to smile about (David Davies/PA)
Trent Boult, centre, has had plenty to smile about (David Davies/PA)

New Zealand have reached the World Cup final with victory over India.

Here, PA Sport looks at the key performers and statistics that have seen the Black Caps into a second straight final.

Kane Williamson

Kane Williamson celebrates his half-century against Afghanistan (Mark Kerton/PA)

The Kiwi captain has the highest batting average in the tournament, overtaking Rohit Sharma after the India opener’s run of centuries ended with a failure in the semi-final.

Two hundreds and two fifties have helped Williamson to 548 runs, fourth-most in the tournament behind Sharma, David Warner and Shakib Al Hasan, at an average of 91.33 – almost five runs clear of his nearest challenger Shakib.

He has also bowled 15 cheap overs – leading his team with an economy rate of 4.26 while picking up the wickets of Pakistan’s Mohammad Hafeez and Australia’s Alex Carey – and was the safe pair of hands under Ravindra Jadeja’s skier as the India all-rounder threatened to turn the semi-final on its head.

Pace and guile

  1. MA Starc, Australia, 26 at 16.61
  2. Mustafizur Rahman, Bangladesh, 20 at 24.20
  3. LH FERGUSON, New Zealand, 18 at 19.94
  4. JJ Bumrah, India, 18 at 20.61
  5. Mohammad Amir, Pakistan, 17 at 21.05
  6. JC Archer, England, 17 at 22.76
  7. TA BOULT, New Zealand, 17 at 24.23

New Zealand have two of the top seven wicket-takers in the tournament in Lockie Ferguson and Trent Boult, the twin spearheads of an impressive pace attack.

Ferguson has 18 wickets at an average cost of just under 20 runs, including four for 37 against Afghanistan and a trio of three-wicket hauls, while his pace and hostility has helped set the tone.

Boult’s left-arm swing is the ideal complement and he is just one wicket behind, with 17 at an average of just over 24, while both have been economical despite regularly bowling in the powerplay and the death overs.

Sharing the load

Jimmy Neesham has contributed in all three phases (David Davies/PA)

Matt Henry has been an excellent third paceman, with 13 wickets at 27.07 and five runs per over, and got a deserved share of the spotlight with the wickets of Sharma, KL Rahul and Dinesh Karthik as India slumped to 24 four four.

Jimmy Neesham has chipped in with 12 scalps – and a stunning catch to account for Karthik on Wednesday – while fellow all-rounder Colin De Grandhomme and spinner Mitchell Santner have been economical and picked up a handful of wickets.

Neesham also made 97 not out against Pakistan in the group stage as every member of the regular top seven has contributed at least one half-century in the tournament, with three from Ross Taylor and two for De Grandhomme.



From Belfast Telegraph