Dubai, Nov 15 (ICC) – The world has weighed in on Australia’s first ICC Men’s T20 World Cup title, after an emphatic eight-wicket win over New Zealand in Dubai.
The final piece of the jigsaw is in place.
Finally, after 14 years and seven campaigns, Australia’s men, under captain Aaron Finch, have claimed the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup title.
Set 173 for victory, Australia’s top order were electric, up for the fight in an assertive chase oozing confidence and class. Chasing down the target by eight wickets and with seven balls remaining, the world watched on as the team raced onto the ground to join Mitchell Marsh and Glenn Maxwell.
Together for a month in tough conditions, the squad and support staff were in the dressing room early to soak up the victory after their world-conquering campaign.
Australia were unfancied by critics and pundits in the lead-up to the tournament, and after five consecutive T20I series defeats in a row, were all but written off to win the tournament.
Commentator Daren Sammy, who lifted the same trophy twice for the West Indies as captain in 2012 and 2016, expressed surprise and congratulations.
Fellow commentator Pommie Mbangwa showed his amazement after Australia’s performance, having watched on from the box during the tournament.
A number of players from the tournament were quick to praise the Australian group following the successful chase. Leg-spinning superstar Rashid Khan, having played franchise cricket with David Warner and New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, showed his appreciation for both sides.
Pakistan’s Shoaib Malik, who enjoyed a few moments of his own at the tournament, described Australians as “deserving champions.”
Player of the Match Mitchell Marsh opened his account with a six, supercharging Australia’s innings with his early siege on New Zealand’s attack. Finishing on 77* from 50 balls, Marsh received a flood of plaudits, including the high praise of Sachin Tendulkar, and former Australian international Trent Copeland, a man who knows of Marsh’s toils and sacrifices more than most.
On the other side, New Zealand were valiant in defeat. Unable to reel their trans-Tasman rivals in, former Black Cap Grant Elliot expressed his pride in the group.
Australia will have the opportunity to defend their title on home soil in October and November next year.