New Zealand stand-in captain Brendon McCullum claimed losing wickets at regular intervals cost them the match against South Africa but promised a much better show from his batsmen once the Super Eights gets underway.
"Everytime we got a partnership going we lost a wicket," McCullum said after his team lost to South Africa by one run in a Group D match of the ICC World Twenty20 at Lord's, in London on Tuesday night.
New Zealand lost way after they were cruising along nicely at one stage but McCullum -- he was leading the side in the absence of the injured Daniel Vettori -- felt it was one off.
"We have a good batting line-up and they know how to clear the ropes," said McCullum, who topscored for his side with 57.
He also praised the South African bowlers and credited his bowling department for restricting Graeme Smith's team to 128.
Smith felt they were some 20 runs short but had faith in his bowlers to see the team though.
"We were probably 20 runs short. After we lost (Jacques) Kallis we lost the momentum. But the bowlers did a good job. We knew the wicket wasn't easy and it was great challenge for us," said Smith who lavished praise on spinners RE van der Merwe and Johan Botha for containing the New Zealand batsmen.