India lost to Australia by six wickets in the ODI World Cup final on Sunday (Nov 19) at the Narendra Modi Cricket Stadium in Ahmedabad. Being asked to bat first, Rohit Sharma-led India were dismissed for 240 in 50 overs after fifties from Virat Kohli (54) and KL Rahul (66). In reply, Australia were tottering at 47 for 3 before Travis Head (137) and Marnus Labuschagne (58 not out) stitched a match-winning 192-run fourth-wicket stand and took Aussies home.
Mitchell Starc’s 3 for 55 and two wickets each from Josh Hazlewood and skipper Pat Cummins derailed India’s progress with the bat before Head’s attacking knock brought India down. India had a memorable run in the entire home ODI WC but fell flat in the final game. The hosts ended with ten wins, which came on the trot, and just a solitary defeat but that came in the summit clash.
‘Indian cricket is in a good place’
After India missed out on winning another home ODI WC, former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram symphathised with Rohit & Co. and made a big statement on Indian cricket.
“Obviously they must be shattered to lose the final but in cricket these things happen. India had one bad day, and unfortunately, it came in the final. You look at their structure, the money for players, the well thought out programs and the back up talent and they really just need to continue doing these things. Their cricket is in a good place,” Akram was quoted as saying by PTI.
Akram recalled the 1999 ODI WC final between Pakistan and Australia. Back then, he was leading the Men in Green who had defeated the Aussies in the league stage but succumbed to a heavy defeat in the final. “I was captain when we played them in the 1999 World Cup final and although we had beaten them in the league stage, in the final they were a different side just like yesterday in Ahmedabad,” Akram added.
India will now shift their focus to the five-match T20I series versus Australia at home, which commences on Nov 23 (Thursday).