Michael Mason, 'emotion and jubilation', and Kane 'not the last man standing' Williamson
"I have never experienced 139 runs taking so long and there was a lot of nervous energy in the change room" - Southee
Meet "Michael Mason". Not him, actually, but the mace that has gone to the New Zealand team after they became the inaugural Test world champions. They also took home a prize money of US$ 1.6 million, but it's the mace, nicknamed after the former fast bowler by the current players, that is all the talk. But impressive as it looks, you still can't drink out of it. You can instead give it a special nickname. Or, as a wise man agreed to a suggestion on Twitter, it can be used to stir drinks in the Bledisloe Cup. The party's just started
The mace - or the Mason - was also given a seat on the flight the players are taking back home. The team - minus the players who are staying back for The Hundred and county stints - is expected to land in Auckland on Saturday morning, and Trent Boult is hoping the celebrations continue at home after they get through their quarantine.
"Waggy [Neil Wagner] probably hasn't let the mace go since last night," Boult was quoted as saying by stuff.co.nz. "The boys are ecstatic. There's been a mixture of emotion and jubilation. Once we get home and through quarantine, we'll hopefully continue the celebrations.
"It's been hard to gauge the reaction from back home because we're so far away, but I'm sure there is a lot of emotion and a lot of pride. The messages have been flying through. We can't wait to get home and celebrate with everyone."
The party began in the dressing room at the Hampshire Bowl in Southampton and continued all evening at the Hilton Hotel. Kane Williamson, who made a 49 and 52 not out in the match, was as honest as he could be about the details of the afterparty.
"I'm okay thanks, my version of that [the party] might not be the same as some others… I feel okay," he told stuff.co.nz. "I don't think I was the last man standing, so I'm maybe not the person to ask.
"We had a great night. The guys were obviously pretty chuffed after a fantastic game of cricket that had a whole heap of momentum shifts. You combine such a special moment after two years of hard work to try and get to the final, with BJ Watling playing his last Test, and it was fitting to push the boat out a little bit."
'May take a couple of weeks to sink in'
For Tim Southee, the big win will take "at least a couple of weeks" to sink in.
"It is amazing to be part of this team. We have been working for this for the last two years," he said in an interview released by NZC. "Not only the 15 players but others probably in the last five-six years (have contributed) to get us to where we are now. It is very special. We had come very close to a few tournaments. It is yet to sink in and may take a couple of weeks."
He believes it was the wickets of Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara on the final day that swung the game decisively. Both batters were dismissed by the outstanding Kyle Jamieson, who was named player of the match, inside the first eight overs of the final (reserve) day before India were all out for 170, giving New Zealand a target of 139 runs; they got there for the loss of two wickets.
"We knew it was going to be tough on the final day, three results were possible then and the first hour to be crucial. But picking up the two wickets in that period was crucial in the end," Southee said.
New Zealand were jolted by R Ashwin, who took two quick wickets early in the chase. But the nerves were calmed by Williamson and Ross Taylor, Southee said, as the two put up an unbroken 96-run stand to guide New Zealand home.
"I have never experienced 139 runs taking so long and there was a lot of nervous energy in the change room," he said. "We had two experienced guys among us who are synonymous with this team not only in the last two years but also probably in the last seven-eight years. To have them, it was very calming for the guys in the change room."
The win also meant that New Zealand have now broken a bit of a hoodoo, having lost in the final of both the 2015 and 2019 50-over World Cups.
"For me, to be involved in the 2015 and 2019 World Cup, to come so close and then come across the line here in a completely different format, a new format that hasn't been contested before is great," Tom Latham said. "From our point of view to win a Test championship final was probably the biggest occasion. We played some really good cricket leading up to it."