Paine apologises to New Zealand for predicting India would be easy winners


 Following the Kane Williamson-led New Zealand’s eight-wicket victory over India in the World Test Championship final at Southampton, Australia Test skipper Tim Paine has had to apologise to the Black Caps for predicting earlier that they would be beaten comfortably by Virat Kohli’s side.

New Zealand received USD 1.6 million (Rs 12 crore approximately) along with an ICC Test Championship Mace for winning the rain-marred inaugural Test championship final.

The 36-year-old Paine had said before the final that India “will win pretty comfortably if they play anywhere near their best”.

“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,” Paine said on Newstalk ZB.

“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 on Friday.

Paine praised New Zealand pace bowler Kyle Jamieson, who dismissed both Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli early on the reserve day to put India on the back foot.

“They’ve done well under Kane (Williamson) since they last played us… they’ve added big Kyle Jamieson, who on day 5 or 6 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.

“They’ve added a big, tall fast bowler who rarely misses his length, complemented by Trent Boult and Tim Southee. The height that he comes down from is clearly troubling batsmen around the world,” said Paine.

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