Pune, Nov 2: After losing to South Africa by 190 runs in the Men’s ODI World Cup, New Zealand all-rounder Glenn Phillips said the team had any regrets about deciding to put the Proteas into batting first, citing the information it was given about the pitch and conditions.
New Zealand came into criticism for making South Africa do what they like doing: batting first. It proved to be game-changing as South Africa posted 357/4, with Quinton de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen making centuries, along with David Miller making a quick fifty.
“At the end of the day, we chose to do a toss what we thought was best on this pitch with the information that's been given and that's what we go by every game. Obviously South Africa are incredibly strong batting first.”
“But we've got an incredibly good bowling lineup and there was no reason that we couldn't have restricted them to a total that could have been a lot easier to chase on there. Playing on at the end, I definitely thought it got better as well. So, I think had things gone slightly differently, we could definitely have come a lot closer than we did,” said Phillips in the post-match press conference.
New Zealand also have injury concerns in Matt Henry going off due to a right hamstring concern and is awaiting result of an MRI scan, with Lockie Ferguson also out due to an achilles injury. Against South Africa, their fielding wasn’t up to the mark, with Trent Boult dropping two chances.
“We definitely recognized that they were playing the style of cricket that they wanted to play. But when any team tries to accelerate, you get opportunities. Quinton had a little bit of luck as well, which helps. Sometimes you need that as a batter and then when that luck goes your way, the runs start to flow, things start to move a little bit, and once momentum starts changing, it's hard to bring it back.”
“At the end of the day a couple of tough chances were dropped, a missed run out when his back was turned to the bowler's end. You have no idea where Quinton's actually standing. Obviously, he had a little bit more time than he thought.”
“But at the end of the day, it's not like we've been dropping straightforward chances or creating a lot of blunders in the field. We've definitely put a lot of pressure on the opposition in the field and we've saved a lot of runs and obviously sometimes people drop catches and that's just the way things go,” he elaborated.
Phillips also spelt out the simple equation for New Zealand to progress into the knockouts, as they relocate to Bengaluru to play Pakistan and Sri Lanka at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in their last two league matches.
“It's just two wins away, and that hopefully puts us in third or fourth place, potentially even second. So, I think if we can just keep sticking to our basics, what we do best on the field, everything will be all right.”
“We try to remain level-headed throughout everything, not ride the highs too high and the lows too low. So, I think for us, it's go about our business as we've done the whole way through, just keeping things simple, sticking to what we do best.”
“The way England, Australia, South Africa, they all play a very aggressive brand of cricket and we've got our own brand and if we stick to it, we know that we're fighters, we keep coming back time and time again and when it matters most, we really put the foot down,” he concluded. (IANS)