New Zealand's Stephen Fleming insisted losing to Australia was no disgrace as his side crashed out of the ICC Champions Trophy at The Oval.
Fleming said New Zealand were heading in the right direction generally but had just had a bad day at the office.
"Just because we lost easily today does not make us a bad side," he said.
"We played poorly against the world champions. The first 20 overs were the worst and then we tried to catch up too quickly. We didn't get it right today."
Fleming and fellow opener Nathan Astle appeared to have veteran Glenn
McGrath under pressure early on.
But he hit back to remove Astle, Hamish Marshall and Scott Styris to end
with 3-39 from 10 overs.
Fleming said: "A wicket does wonders and I thought McGrath was searching a
little. But he is so experienced and he came back strong."
With only 199 to defend, New Zealand were always up against it, but they removed
Adam Gilchrist in the first over and were unlucky when three lbw appeals against Matthew Hayden in the second over were denied.
Fleming went on: "There were two or three decisions which did not go our way. If
we had got them to 100-5 then we would have had a game. But we just did not
take wickets regularly enough."
Although Australia will remain firm favourites for the title, Fleming said
another team could beat them to the crown.
"There are a few sides out there, like Pakistan, England or Sri Lanka who
could cause an upset," he added.