Australian Test skipper Tim Paine has reacted to his statement of backing India to win the inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand. Paine had earlier predicted that the Virat Kohli-led India would win the WTC final pretty comfortably.
“My prediction is India will win pretty comfortably if they play anyway near their best,” Paine had said in a video posted by cricket.com.au on Twitter.
However, in the summit clash at Rose Bowl in Southampton, Black Caps defeated India by eight wickets to become World Champions and win the prestigious Test mace.
Chasing 139 on the last day of the WTC final, Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson and senior batsman Ross Taylor played unbeaten knocks off 52 and 47, respectively, to take their side over the line.
Reacting to New Zealand’s sensational performance in the high-voltage contest, Paine apologised to their fans, highlighting how Williamson and Co. have progressed over the last few months. The wicketkeeper-batsman mentioned that New Zealand have done a tremendous job despite being a small nation, and he respects them.
“We all get some wrong. I copped a bit from the Kiwi fans, so I thought I’d come on air and eat some humble pie. I thought the New Zealanders played outstandingly. It’s always a pleasure to watch the way they go about it. For such a small nation – I’m from Tasmania, which is obviously our smallest resource state, and we punch above our weight – so I certainly respect what the Kiwis do on an international stage,” said Paine as quoted by stuff.co.nz.
Paine heaped praises on New Zealand’s cricket system for finding special talents like Kyle Jamieson and Devon Conway, who have been quite impressive in the international arena.
“They’ve done well under Kane Williamson since they last played us… they’ve added big Kyle Jamieson, who on day five or six was outstanding, and a quality opening batter which is Devon Conway, so they’re always improving, and they always seem to find these good cricketers” he added.