Pakistan thrash arch-rivals India to win ICC Champions Trophy

Elias Hubbard
June 19, 2017

On a placid track where batting looked easy when Pakistan were batting, Amir gave three early blows to India by dismissing Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan in his spell of six overs.

It was all a far cry from the Asian giants' opening group match at Edgbaston on June 4 where Pakistan slumped to 164 all out in a thumping 124-run defeat by India.

Gaining sweet revenge over India, Pakistan thrashed their arch-rivals by 180 runs at The Oval to win the Champions Trophy for the first time.

Amir, who missed Pakistan's semi-final win over England with a back spasm, had taken two wickets for four runs in eight balls and India were six for two. He ran out his fellow opener Azhar Ali while he was ball-watching after they'd made a record 128 but he shrugged that off too to earn his maiden century for Pakistan, in only his fourth one-day worldwide, 11 days after his debut.

Pakistan: Sarfraz Ahmed (captain and wicket-keeper), Ahmed Shehzad, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Amir, Rumman Raees, Junaid Khan, Imad Wasim, Fahim Ashraf, Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail.

"So you can only do so much, as I said, as a bowler and as a captain when that is happening, ' Kohli did sound a tad helpless trying to explain Zaman's performance".

Mohammad Amir was hailed as Pakistan's man for the big occasion as he enjoyed redemption here seven years after his darkest moment.

"They were more intense and passionate today, they deserved to win".

Pakistan thrash arch-rivals India to win ICC Champions Trophy
Pakistan thrash arch-rivals India to win ICC Champions Trophy

Pakistan have lost all three of their previous matches against India in the knockout stages of International Cricket Council events but Sarfraz said: "I am proud of my boys: we were ranked number eight and today, we have nothing to lose".

The Pakistani bowlers, who have done very well since after the early India match, came in with all guns blazing.

India still had three wickets in hand but the deafening cheers from the Pakistan fans made clear that the end was nigh.

Given that the highest successful run-chase in an ODI at the Oval was the 322-3 scored by Sri Lanka against India 10 days ago, Kohli's side needed a strong start to defy history.

Pakistan have been starved of global cricket in their own country since an attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in 2009, forcing them to play their "home" series at neutral venues.

Amir and Hasan Ali's three wickets each guided Pakistan to bowl out India for just 158 runs in 30.3 overs.

Leg-spinner Shadab took a wicket with his sixth ball when Yuvraj Singh (22) was lbw, although it needed a Pakistan review of an original not out decision.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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