Understated, underdog Kiwis are a team worth cheering for

Find something black to wear tomorrow. Pin a silver fern to it. Open a bottle of Steinlager. You can then consider yourself an honorary Kiwi for a day. If you feel the urge to do an awkward haka in your living room, let the moment pass.

It's World Cup final day in cricket and if you are not English then presumably you are cheering for New Zealand. As Sharda Ugra, senior writer for ESPNcricinfo puts it, "after your own country, they are everyone's favourite second team". Because their competitiveness is not stained by conceit and their skill not sullied by vanity. They are the unstarry team persistently chasing an outsized dream.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 13, 2019, with the headline 'Understated, underdog Kiwis are a team worth cheering for'. Subscribe