Pakistan stun holders India to lift Champions Trophy

Ross Houston
June 20, 2017

India, however, does have an upper hand since Pakistan usually is on the losing side against India in ICC tournaments.

With its win, Pakistan, which came into the tournament ranked No. 8 in the world, has clinched its first Champions Trophy victory.

Chasing a challenging total of 339 runs, India bowed down before the Pakistani bowlers and got all out for mere 158 runs in 33.3 overs.

It was Pakistan's day at the Oval.

After Kohli won the toss and, surprisingly, opted to field first, Pakistan posted an imposing total of 338 for four featuring Fakhar Zaman's maiden one-day global hundred, an innings where he might have been run out for one and was caught off a no-ball on three.

Four players, including Hassan Ali, Babar Azam, Fahim Ashraf and Ahmad Shahzad, landed at Allam Iqbal International Airport, Lahore in wee hours of Tuesday, where they were warmly welcomed by the provincial ministers and a crowd of their fans.

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.

The two featured in an unbeaten 71 run-stand for the fifth wicket off 47 balls to handle an improved bowling performance by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Co in the final ten overs.

"India has a very good side and they came under pressure today".

Their hopes then rested largely on the shoulders of opener Shikhar Dhawan who had been in fine form in the tournament but he made only 21 before nicking the inspired Amir to Sarfraz. It was a beauty of a cross seamer with extra bounce.

But he could not stop Sunday's slide as he holed out off Hasan, with Imad Wasim taking a low catch in the deep. When Kedar Jadhav too fell for 9 to Shadad, Pakistan's victory was just a formality.

Fakhar responded with two overs of circumspection and then two more brought him three fours and two sixes as he suddenly put his foot down against India's two specialist spinners on his way to a century which was brought up when he swept Ravi Ashwin ferociously to the fence again.

He was caught behind off Bumrah on three but replays showed the paceman had bowled a no-ball. There after the Pakistan openers were in full flow, refusing to commit any mistakes.

Latest Update: Hassan Ali, sharp short ball at Bumrah first up and the batsman gets nicely behind it, defends. Hasan Ali bowls with a big heart.

It was a treat to watch Zaman picking the gaps for boundaries, often disecting the fielders.

Babar Azam kept up the momentum. Zaman reached his maiden century in 97 balls. Zaman hit in the air and Jadeja took a well judged catch running back from point.

Pandya was involved in a mix-up with Ravindra Jadeja and was run-out.

"Its bowling attack was brilliant with Mohammad Amir and Junaid Khan contributing well throughout the tournament but the emergence of a couple of newer players in Hasan Ali and Fakhar Zaman, who scored a brilliant century in the final, is exciting for the future for Pakistan".

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