Sunday, 17 December, 2017

ICC Champions Trophy 2017 Final

Melinda Barton | 20 June, 2017, 03:00

Pakistan's players celebrate their victory over India on the pitch after the ICC Champions Trophy final cricket match between India and Pakistan at The Oval in London on June 18, 2017.

All three were gone after nine overs, five of them fierce seam bowling by Mohammad Amir, who was passed fit to play after missing the surprise semifinal victory over England because of a back spasm.

India had thrashed Pakistani side by 124 runs in their tournament opener at Edgbaston on June 4.

Zaman scored his maiden century after he was handed a reprieve earlier in the innings when Jasprit Bumrah had him caught behind off a no ball while Amir picked the in-form Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and Kohli inside the first powerplay to dent India's hopes.

Amir, whose career was almost ended on the other side of London's River Thames by a ban and jail sentence for his involvement in a spot-fixing scan during a 2010 Test at Lord's, made a brilliant comeback after a back spasm forced him out of the semi-final victory over England.

Opener Fakhar Zaman, playing only his fourth One Day International, mixed fearlessness with sensibility and smashed 114 from just 106 balls to help his team post a mammoth 338 on board.

In the past, we have witnessed incidents where some fans bashed our players on social media, some even hurled stones at the houses of Indian cricketers, some abused the family members of cricketers blaming them whenever Indian team lost major matches.

"Fakhar is a great impact player, he played like a champion batsman today".

Kohli's dismissal for five following a golden run in the tournament prompted gloom among the India supporters.

Their confidence was dented when they suffered a thumping loss to arch-rivals and neighbours India in their opening match of the campaign and the limp performance put Pakistan's chances of reaching the semi-finals in severe jeopardy.

As soon as the sun set and people broke their religious fast, large numbers came out to watch Pakistan seamers squeezing India in its run-chase.

The decline cost Azhar Ali the captaincy and Sarfraz Ahmed, the Twenty20 skipper, was elevated to the role in February. You talk about our players not playing at home but also the fans not identifying with heroes because they just don't see worldwide cricket.

The man from Etawah praised Hardik Pandya for his sensational knock of 76 off 43 balls and expressed disappointment over his unfortunate run-out.

Pakistan had to earn their win and they made us make mistakes.

Pakistan veteran Mohammad Hafeez's quickfire 57 not out, including three sixes, then took Pakistan well beyond 300.

Pandya was visibly upset with the lack of communication between him and Jadeja, who never really looked interested to take the run in the first place.