Under-fire England captain Eoin Morgan said his side were "disappointed" rather than "embarrassed" by New Zealand during an eight-wicket World Cup thumping in Wellington on Friday. New Zealand cemented their status as one of the favourites for a maiden World Cup title as they made short shrift of a hapless England.
Tim Southee took a New Zealand one-day international best of seven for 33 before Brendon McCullum's punishing 25-ball 77 sealed victory, with the Westpac Stadium match lasting just 45.4 overs in total.
Victory gave New Zealand their third straight win in as many Pool A games while England were left with two defeats in two after their 111-run thumping by Australia, the other co-hosts.Asked whether Friday's loss was embarrassing or shocking, a surprisingly calm Morgan replied: "Disappointing more than anything. The way New Zealand bowled, they built some pressure and we couldn't cope with it."
England were staging something of a revival at 104 for when Joe Root (46) and Morgan (17) were at the crease but Southee's second spell of five for 10 in 18 balls saw them dismissed for just 123 in 33.2 overs.Morgan holed out to veteran spinner Daniel Vettori but the left-hander defended his choice of stroke by saying: "We kept trying to put the pressure on their bowlers and looking back, I still would have played that aggressive shot because at the time we needed to take the game continually to them because they were gaining control."
As for Southee's return, Morgan said: "I actually didn't face him but it looked pretty difficult. When he can turn it over in the fashion that he did, you know, credit to him."New Zealand captain McCullum then completed England's humiliation by hitting the fastest World Cup fifty, off just 18 balls, on his way to a blistering 77.
However, Morgan reiterated his belief that England had been given an especially tough start to the World Cup."We knew these first two games were going to be difficult games playing in these conditions. But we shouldn't be beaten by this much. We were way below par.""We are not doing the basics right and not producing what we practice."
However, the former Ireland international added: "We can still make the quarter-finals, as soon as we start winning and getting into the next game."Morgan, whose side next play non-Test border rivals Scotland in Christchurch on Monday, insisted England wouldn't push the panic button after two huge defeats.
"Certainly you don't want to get into a state of panic where we make three or four changes in one day," he said."That's certainly not what I'm about. I believe at the moment that any of our players can play. The players that played today I believe were the best to win today, and on given conditions, we'll change plans accordingly."But, again, just because we were there for them today doesn't necessarily mean anything."