New Zealand’s Early Exit in the 2024 T20 World Cup

T20 World Cup
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New Zealand’s disappointing journey in the T20 World Cup 2024 came to a close on Monday with a consolation 7-wicket victory over Papua New Guinea at the Brian Lara Stadium in Tarouba. Despite also winning their match against Uganda by 9 wickets, both games were essentially dead rubbers. The Black Caps’ campaign was brief and ultimately unsuccessful.

Early Setbacks

The Kiwis were unable to recover from early setbacks in the tournament, particularly their defeats to Afghanistan and West Indies. When Afghanistan beat PNG by 7 wickets, New Zealand’s elimination from the competition was confirmed. Their campaign was marred by strategic mistakes and poor player form, which prevented them from gaining any momentum.

Key Factors in New Zealand’s Downfall

Controversial Team Selections

One of the most controversial decisions was the exclusion of Tim Southee, the all-time leading wicket-taker in T20Is, from the match against Afghanistan. Instead, Matt Henry, who had only 20 wickets from 17 games since his debut in 2014, was chosen. This gamble did not pay off, as New Zealand suffered an 84-run defeat. Although Henry took 2 wickets, he was the most expensive bowler with an economy rate of 9.25. In contrast, Southee had an impressive economy rate and was the Player of the Match against Uganda with figures of 4-1-4-3.

Underutilization of Ish Sodhi

Wrist-spinners played a significant role in the T20 World Cup, with players like Rishad Hossain, Adam Zampa, Wanindu Hasaranga, and Rashid Khan being particularly effective. However, New Zealand’s Ish Sodhi, the fourth-highest wicket-taker in T20Is, played only one game. Despite Sodhi’s strong performance in that match, with figures of 3.4-0-29-2, he was largely sidelined in favor of Mitchell Santner, Rachin Ravindra, Michael Bracewell, and Glenn Phillips.

Tactical Errors Against West Indies

New Zealand’s tactical errors were evident in their match against the West Indies. After reducing the West Indies to 112 for 9 in 17.5 overs, the Kiwis’ decision to bowl out their pace trio early left them relying on part-time bowlers in the death overs. This allowed Sherfane Rutherford to capitalize, scoring 68 runs off 39 balls. New Zealand eventually lost by 13 runs, missing a critical opportunity to stay in contention.

Batting Failures

New Zealand’s batting lineup struggled throughout the tournament. None of their batters managed to score a half-century, with Glenn Phillips’ 40 being the highest score. Key players like Kane Williamson, Devon Conway, Daryl Mitchell, and Rachin Ravindra failed to perform, with Allen and Ravindra averaging only 8.75 and 8.50, respectively. Mitchell Santner had the highest strike rate among them at 125, while Phillips could only manage 113.72. Williamson, expected to anchor the innings, scored just 28 runs at an average of 14.


New Zealand’s fast bowlers, including Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson, and Tim Southee, performed admirably, often keeping the team in contention. Boult delivered in his final T20 World Cup, Ferguson bowled four maidens in a single T20I, and Southee consistently displayed his experience and skill. However, these efforts were overshadowed by strategic blunders, underperformance by key players, and ineffective team selections, leading to New Zealand’s early exit from the T20 World Cup 2024.

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