NZ humiliate England to reach T20 Final

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Kiwis defeat Cup aspirants in a thriller; Pakistan take on Australia today


ABU DHABI: Daryl Mitchell smashed an unbeaten 72 as New Zealand beat England by five wickets with an over to spare to reach the Twenty20 World Cup final on Wednesday.

Chasing 166 for victory, New Zealand were in trouble at 13-2 and 107-4 when Jimmy Neesham hit an 11-ball 27 and Mitchell finished it off with a boundary.

New Zealand will be in their first ever T20 World Cup final where they will face either Australia or Pakistan.

Earlier, all-rounder Moeen Ali smashed an unbeaten 51 to steer England to a challenging 166 for four. England lost their openers including Jos Buttler for 29, lbw off Ish Sodhi, after being invited to bat first as Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson won an all-important toss in Abu Dhabi.

But Moeen hit back with his 37-ball knock and put on a key partnership of 63 with Dawid Malan, who hit 41, for the third wicket.

Pace bowlers Tim Southee and Trent Boult kept a tight leash in the first three overs before Buttler smashed two successive boundaries.

Jonny Bairstow also got a couple of fours but did not look comfortable after being promoted to open in place of the injured Jason Roy.

Adam Milne replaced fellow quick Boult from one end to break through as he got Bairstow out for 13 off 17 balls with Williamson taking a sharp catch at mid-off.

In-form Buttler tried to rebuild but an attempt to reverse sweep leg-spinner Ish Sodhi got him trapped lbw for 29 off 24 deliveries.

The opener, who moved past Pakistan’s Babar Azam as the leading batsman in the tournament with 269 runs, reviewed the call but replays suggested the ball would have hit his off stump.