New Zealand (6/5 Tournament Outright) captain Kane Williamson is anticipating another “fantastic” match in Sunday’s T20 World Cup final after his side beat England by five wickets in Wednesday’s first semi-final in Abu Dhabi.

Williamson’s side will now go on to face the winner of Thursday’s second semi-final, with Pakistan facing Australia in Dubai, with Sunday’s final also due to take place at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium (Match Winner – Pakistan 5/6, Australia 20/21).

After losing Jason Roy to a calf injury, Jonny Bairstow was pushed to the top of the England order alongside Jos Buttler and despite decent starts of 13 and 29, respectively, England’s innings really got going when Dawid Malan came to the crease.

Malan’s 41 off 30 balls was only outshone by an unbeaten 51 from 37 by Moeen Ali as England posted 166-4.

The Kiwis’ reply started slowly with both Martin Guptil and Williamson falling for single figures off the bowling of Chris Woakes.

However, England couldn’t shift Daryl Mitchell, who top-scored with 72 off 47 balls. The 30-year-old batted through the innings, smashing four fours and as many sixes.

That said, it was Jimmy Neesham’s contribution that was arguably the most decisive, the left-handed batter smashing 27 off just 11 deliveries as the Black Caps chased down 57 off 24 balls.

After losing the 50-over global showpiece to England in 2019, Wednesday’s win represents a degree of revenge and the Kiwis now have a chance to claim their maiden global limited-overs title on Sunday in Dubai.

Speaking afterwards, Williamson admitted it was a relief to have progressed, but he is taking nothing for granted as his side turn to face either Pakistan (21/10 Tournament Outright) or their Antipodean rivals, Australia (5/2).

Williamson said: “We’ve played each other on a number of occasions, knew it would be a great game of cricket, and really chuffed with the heart that was shown throughout that performance.

Looking ahead to Sunday’s final, he added: “The guys have been watching most of the games. It’ll be a fantastic match, highly competitive. We know we have another challenge coming up and we’ll change our focus after tonight.”

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