Team India was tipped to make it at least to the semi-finals of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 and they made it. Once it was confirmed that New Zealand will be India’s opponent in the semi-finals, the Virat Kohli-led side’s chances of making it to the final grew. There was a reason for it, New Zealand came into the semis with three consecutive defeats against Pakistan, Australia, and England. The Blackcaps did not play their best in these matches and were rated not-so-difficult opponents for India. New Zealand vs India Highlights 1st Semi Final WC Match.
However, Kane Williamson and his boys stunned one and all to beat India, the tournament favourites, and qualify for the final. Kiwis’ 18-run win the semis ended India’s World Cup 2019 campaign. A campaign that was predicted, by most, to end with a title win. Nonetheless, India played some good cricket throughout the tournament and lived upto the expectations almost every time they went out to compete. Virat Kohli Puts Up A Brave Face After India’s Defeat Against New Zealand in CWC 2019 Semi-Finals; Thanks Fans for Their Support (Read Post).
Round Robin Stage
Fittingly, India finished as table-toppers after 15 points from nine matches. The Men in Blue were aided by South Africa’s win over Australia in the last round-robin match to top the team standings.
India opened its campaign with an impressive win over South Africa. The 2011 winners made it two out two wins against defending champions Australia. Interestingly, India’s round-robin match against New Zealand was washed-out and teams had to share the points.
The Men in Blue then outplayed traditional-rivals Pakistan and followed it up with a narrow win over Afghanistan. Team India was back to its best against West Indies and crushed them by 125 runs.
However, India suffered their first setback in the tournament against hosts England when the latter handed them a 31-run defeat. At this stage, India needed one more win from remaining two matches to qualify for the semis. Umpire Error Cost India CWC 2019 World Cup Semi-Final? Controversy Erupts After Graph Shows 6 Fielders Outside 30-Yard Circle Before MS Dhoni's Run-Out in Powerplay 3.
India went on to win both its remaining matches against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka and qualified for the last four along with Australia, England and New Zealand.
“Come the knockouts, it's anyone's game,” Kohli was right when he spoke after the match against New Zealand. The first semi-final of CWC19 was played over two days after the rains forced the game to go into the reserve day.
In search of 240, the famous Indian batting line-up gave up early on. Inside four overs India were three down, including Kohli, with just five runs on board. The problems increased for India as the game progressed and it became 92 for six. Ravindra Jadeja and MS Dhoni tried their best to take India past the required total but the initial damage was such that it was beyond repairs. The Men in Blue eventually had a fall at the penultimate hurdle.
Given the standards Indian team had set over the years, it is a disappointment not to see them in the finals. India’s campaign maybe pleasing on paper but in reality, it ended on a sad note. Despite playing good cricket throughout, one bad day has resulted in India’s ouster. Bowlers will hold their heads high, but batsmen failed at one of the crucial stages in the tournament.