Jason Roy quick-fire half century crushes New Zealand; England bags place in World T20 final

News Bharati English    31-Mar-2016

New Delhi, March 31: The smashing batting performance by the England let them keep an upper hand over the New Zealand as the former defeated the unbeaten blackcaps in the semi-final of World T-20 by 7 wickets at Delhi. With opener Jason Roy maiden T20 fifty, England steered into the final of the ICC World T-20 where they will face the winner of India and West Indies match.

The surrey batsman smashed 78 off 44 balls before Jos Butler and Joe Root guided England over the line to reach their target with 17 balls remaining.

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New Zealand had earlier set England 154 to win with the Black caps stuttering to 153 for eight due to quality death bowling from Ben Stokes and Chris Jordan saw collect seven wickets for just 64 runs in the last 10 overs. Roy set up the pursuit by dominating an opening stand of 82 in just 8.2 overs with Alex Hales before Buttler hit a six to cap off an impressive win.

England have now reached the World T20 final for the first time since their 2010 triumph as they await the winner of India against West Indies in the second semi-final on Thursday

An unchanged England side had resurrected their tournament after a crushing opening defeat to West Indies, reeling off three straight wins to progress from the Super 10 stage. New Zealand looked to be the in-form side of the tournament after shocking the hosts India as they went into the last four unbeaten.

Martin Guptill, replacing Henry Nicholls having been rested against Bangladesh, set the tone early, smacking two boundaries off the opening over after New Zealand lost the toss and were put in to bat. But England made an early breakthrough in the next over as David Willey found Guptill's edge and Buttler took the catch to remove the opener for 15.

Yorkshire batsman Kane Williamson and Colin Munro gradually restored order with a 72-run second-wicket stand.

With New Zealand looking poised for a big score at 89 for one, England reverted to spin and got their reward as Moeen Ali had Williamson caught and bowled for 32. After the dismissal of their skipper on 90 for two, New Zealand's run rate stuttered from that point as England's bowlers bossed the last 10 overs.

Munro was determined to keep his wicket, however, hitting seven fours in his 46 off 32 balls but fell in the 13th over as Liam Plunkett's full delivery was edged to Moeen. From the 16th over onwards, England's bowling unit gained control as Ross Taylor was sent back to the pavilion for six, before Stokes collected two wickets in successive balls with Luke Ronchi and the big-hitting Corey Anderson caught on six and 28 respectively.

Mitchell McClenaghan was the last man to go from a direct hit from Stokes, who finished with figures of 3-26, as the Black Caps were restricted to 153 for eight. Roy wasted no time in the run chase, smacking four boundaries off the opening over. Hales joined the party as he punished a short ball from McClenaghan as he, alongside Roy, put England in a commanding position with an 82-run opening partnership.

The Surrey batsman would reach his half-ton off 26 balls, coupled with nine boundaries, before Hales would fall for 20 off Mitchell Santner. Roy's inspiring innings finally came to an end with Ish Sodhi bowling him before the spinner had skipper Eoin Morgan out lbw for a golden duck next ball.

Root and Buttler steadied the ship before the latter went on an onslaught, bringing England over the finish line with three sixes from four deliveries. Opener Jason Roy has a lot of different shots in his arsenal, backed up by some tremendous power. His 78 runs off 44 balls knocked the stuffing out of the total and ensured the required run rate never became an issue. He was honoured man of the match for his brilliant batting.

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