T20 World Cup: Good to see Jimmy Neesham do justice to his talent, says Sunil Gavaskar

Written by Abhishek Patil

Jimmy Neesham almost single-handedly turned things around for New Zealand in their semi-final against England before Daryl Mitchell finished things off and former India captain Sunil Gavaskar said that it is good to see the Kiwi all-rounder do justice to his talent.

Neesham smashed 27 off 11 balls just as New Zealand’s required run rate was creeping above 14.

“Jimmy Neesham has been a player who would play one special innings in about eight or nine and he played that today,” Gavaskar told India Today.

“What an innings, scoring at a strike rate of over 240. He was hitting the ball well. He had a bit of luck with that Jonny Bairstow catch which went over the boundary and it became a six. But clearly, Neesham has got the ability. He is a big hitter, he can bowl usefuly and Kane Williamson showed faith in him by giving him the 20th over of the England innings so yes, it is good to see Jimmy Neeshan do justice to his talent,” he said.

Gavaskar said that he would like to see an innings of this manner from opener Martin Guptill, who was dismissed for four runs off three balls on Wednesday.

“I would like to see Martin Guptill do that as well. He is another fine talent but he has been an underachiever most of the time. Hopefully, we will see that in the final,” he said.

Gavaskar said that New Zealand’s unity and the effect that captain Williamson has on them is a reason why they are able to perform in big tournaments. The BlackCaps had earlier made it to the final of the 2019 World Cup as well.

“They have a lot of belief in themselves. They are a very close-knit unit. It’s a small country soo when they get together as a team, you can see the unity. They are led by an absolutely terrific person. A person who will never put pressure on them, who is respected for the way he handles situations and for the way he himself bats and for the legend that he is in the sport.

“I think these things make a difference. When you have a leader who is respected and for whom the team will give that extra mile and an arm and a leg, it makes a difference. You see that in their approach. It was never an easy target but they did it with deliveries to spare,” said Gavaskar.

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Abhishek Patil