Andrew Alderson

Andrew Alderson is a sport writer for the Herald on Sunday.

Cricket: Proud winners - or bad sports?

The Black Caps have attracted condemnation for the ugly altercation that took place in their shock World Cup quarterfinal win over South Africa.

A stoush erupted after 12th man Kyle Mills was shoved by opposition player Francois du Plessis as the Black Caps gained ascendancy when AB de Villiers was run out.

Members of the New Zealand team, including captain Daniel Vettori, then surrounded du Plessis to goad him about the loss of his side's star batsman. His dismissal came as South Africa crumbled at 122 for five.

British media outlets including the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph and the BBC have all questioned the Black Caps' role in the incident.

Writing in the Daily Telegraph, Simon Briggs attacked them for their "foul-mouthed, intimidatory huddle".

"[It] was the type of thing you see more often in football than cricket," he wrote.

Vettori, Mills and du Plessis have been fined part of their match fees for their roles in the altercation. The percentage had not been established at the time of writing.

Match referee Roshan Mahanama looked into the incident and made his decision shortly after the game.

Black Caps manager Dave Currie said the incident showed the emotions that came with competitive sport at the highest level.

"In the heat of the moment there was an exchange of words and Kyle probably wasn't smart to get involved - he understands and acknowledges that."

Currie said Du Plessis was cited for pushing Mills.

It completes another disappointing injury-affected campaign for Mills who has been struggling with a quad muscle strain. He flew home yesterday to be replaced by Andy McKay.

Meanwhile, a Kiwi punter lost $50,000 after placing the huge sum on South Africa to win when Ryder was dismissed - at odds of just $1.28.

A TAB spokesman said: "Things weren't looking good for the Black Caps at that point. But the South Africans had another collapse."

New Zealand's odds to win the tournament had shortened from $20 before Friday night's game to $7 last night.

The victory means another sleepless night for hardcore fans on Tuesday, when the Black Caps will face Sri Lanka, who knocked England out of the tournament overnight.

- Herald on Sunday

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