New Zealand paceman Matt Henry’s triple strike in the beginning of Indian chase, which included the prize scalp of Rohit Sharma for just 1, set up his team’s sensational 18-run over favorites India in the first semifinal of the ICC World Cup at Old Trafford in Manchester on Wednesday (July 10).
Henry, along with new ball partner Trent Boult, got the prize scalps of opener Rohit and Indian skipper Virat Kohli cheaply as India slipped to 5 for 3 chasing 240 to win.
The Black Caps have now reached the World Cup final for the second time in succession.
“It’s a really special win. Coming up against a world-class side like India who have been playing really good cricket, to be on right side of a win was really special,” Henry told the ICC.
Henry has now picked up 13 wickets in eight games — the third highest wicket-taker in the tournament for the Kiwis after Lockie Ferguson’s 18 wickets and Boult’s 17.
“Obviously you always want to get wickets at the top, that stems the flow of runs. Rohit and Virat have been brilliant all tournament and to have those early wickets allowed us to play our game and put pressure on their middle-order,” the 27-year-old added.
Henry, who now has 91 ODI wickets in 51 games at an average of 26.34, felt the experience of tough games against West Indies when they survived an onslaught by Carlos Brathwaite helped the team in good stead in the semis.
“You call back on moments like Brathwaite’s hitting in our game against West Indies. You always want to learn from them. We have had some tight games and managed to cross the line, those moments help us in handling pressure in crunch games like the semifinals,” Henry said in the ICC mixed zone.
Finally, asked about a second-successive final, Henry said, “It’s a pretty special moment to go to a Lord’s final. I think we have to assess when we get there and keep backing ourselves.
“It’s tough to separate the two teams — Australia have been playing good cricket, England is a good team in their home backyard. It’s going to be a good watch,” he added.