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New Zealand Kiwis, flights, Jesse Bromwich, press conference comments

New Zealand captain Jesse Bromwich blasted World Cup organisers for being “disrespectful” after it was revealed the Kiwis had been pre-booked to fly out of England the day after their semi-final.

The forecast by World Cup officials that New Zealand would not qualify for the final came to fruition in a 16-14 defeat to Australia on Saturday (AEDT), but the Kiwis are ropeable at the presumptuous call to book their flight home from Manchester.

Bromwich vented at the decision as he addressed the media following New Zealand’s semi-final exit at Leeds’ Elland Road.

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“I don’t really want to talk about that too much,” Bromwich said.

“It’s pretty disrespectful.

“I don’t really want to talk about that, to be honest.”

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that World Cup organisers had predicted when teams would be knocked out so they could suspend flights.

The Kiwis, despite being ranked No.1 in the world, learned Australia had been scheduled to fly out after the final at Old Trafford the following week.

New Zealand forward Brandon Smith backed Bromwich’s comments regarding the early call.

“I think we did (find it disrespectful), and I think pretty rightly so,” Smith said.

“But we tried to use that as motivation. In a way it was a good thing — something like that is pretty good fuel for the fire.

“Unfortunately, we couldn’t get it done.”

Tempers erupt in Roos-Kiwis cracker

On the cusp of the Kiwis’ semi-final against the Kangaroos, New Zealand icon Tony Kemp said it wasn’t the first time they had been scorned by tournament organisers.

“They put them in terrible hotels. They always have done,” Kemp said on SENZ Breakfast.

“They give them the worst fields to train on, and the English and Australians have treated them like that for years.

“Was I surprised when I read that (about the early flight booking)? Not at all.”

Australia will shoot for its third World Cup title in succession in a clash with Samoa next Sunday (AEDT).

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But New Zealand coach Michael Maguire is adamant his side is closing in on the Kangaroos.

“One thing that I do know that the boys have done (is) they’ve closed the gap. They’ve closed the gap between where we’ve been and where we are as a group now,” an emotional Maguire said after the Kiwis’ semi-final loss.

“It could have gone our way but unfortunately just the bounce of the ball there (didn’t go our way). Right in that corner, right there, it was there.

“So the gap between the teams, I believe, has closed immensely, and we’ve just got to keep pushing forward and close it even more.”

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