India continued to lose wickets at the regular intervals.
India captain Virat Kohli defended his decision to bowl on a flat track and said a lucky reprieve for centurion Fakhar Zaman proved to be a costly one in the Champions Trophy final against Pakistan here on Sunday.
“Indeed (disappointing). Congratulations to Pakistan and their fans”.
Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav followed each other back to the pavilion in quick succession as Pakistan tightened their grip on the proceedings. We created a combination after the loss against Sri Lanka. “We have no hesitation or shame to admit we didn’t play our best game today”.
India had thrashed Pakistani side by 124 runs in their tournament opener at Edgbaston on June 4. Kohli couldn’t make the most of the life though as he fell off the very next ball for five and India were 6/2.
Fakhar hit 12 fours and three sixes before skying a catch off Hardik Pandya but Pakistan had the ideal platform to make the highest total in a Champions Trophy final. His 114 at strike rate of 107, took Pakistan to 338.
But Kohli (5), the big match player did not get going, along with Rohit Sharma (0) and Shikhar Dhawan (21), and the defending never came back into the game after that.
“Amir bowled brilliantly today but all my bowlers bowled really well”.
The duo forged 128-run partnership in 23 overs before a running mix-up cost Pakistan a wicket. He didn’t need to; he had done enough to ensure that Sarfraz held the glittering silverware aloft in the evening.
Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur too was a happy man. The win couldn’t have been timelier for both the country and its captain.
Hafeez hit 57 off 37 balls including three sixes and together with Imad Wasim (25*) powered Pakistan to the biggest total seen at this year’s Champions Trophy, 338/4.
As for India, they seemed to have been carried away.
India’s performance in the tournament though has established once again that they are a powerhouse in global cricket.
The victory, and its relative ease over an India team that not only had got the better of Pakistan in one-day matches for the past decade, winning 12 and losing only eight – and winning four of the last five since 2013 – stunned cricket fans and experts, especially coming from a Pakistan team that has played only one worldwide series in its home country since a 2009 terrorist attack forced them to adopt the United Arab Emirates as their home turf.
Bad luck guys. Better team on day won. Then the spinners, led by R Ashwin, were so defensive that India lost the crucial middle overs.
Michael Vaughan, England’s former captain, noted the odds Pakistan had to overcome.