The victory sent 2015 runners-up New Zealand to their second consecutive World Cup final and Vettori said they would be full of confidence. But a rain-induced one-day interval later, and with a very gettable yet tricky run chase, New Zealand bowlers Matt Henry, Trent Boult and Mitchell Santner quickly clipped the Indian batting order and then hobbled it down to clever, choke-bowling.
And out-of-touch opener Martin Guptill produced a trademark devastating piece of fielding when he ran Dhoni out with a direct hit. "If Dhoni was there when (Rishabh) Pant was batting, he would not have allowed Pant to play that shot against the breeze", Ganguly said after the youngster holed out on the boundary to put India in further strife at 71-5. If you look at the way KL Rahul got out for example, he did not know whether to touch the ball or not touch it with his bat, and that's why he got out.
"I don't think that I would like to break things down immediately, but in time we'll have to sit down and analyse where we went wrong and the things we could have done right in this game particularly", said Kohli.
"The other batsmen also did not show much intent until Jadeja came in and played superbly". The Virat Kohli-led India were one of the pre-tournament favourites and did justice to their reputation barring the semi-finals where one bad day in the office ended their dreams. "And had Dhoni dived, who knows, he wouldn't have got run-out and would have taken India across the finishing line", he added. "Dhoni is an absolute legend".
"But whatever happens it's going to be a great occasion, and the Black Caps can go into that game with a lot of confidence behind them".
"The sun will still rise tomorrow", was the main headline on the sports page of India's largest selling English daily The Times of India, while the Hindustan Times described the team's failed attempt to win a third title as the "Knockout Blues". For me, India had already won the World Cup when we qualified for the semis at the top of the list as the No 1 team.
New Zealand will now play either Australia or England in the finals to be played on Sunday at Lord's.