Ahmedabad: After a scintillating win over India in the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup, Australian skipper Pat Cummins lauded Travis Head for his match-winning century, saying that backing the opener while he was injured paid off.
Another heartbreak was added to the list of Indian fans as Men in Blue succumbed to Australia, led by a masterclass from Travis Head, which helped the Aussies lift their sixth World Cup title.
‘I think we saved our best for last. A couple of big-match players stepped up and chuffed. Today we thought it was a good night to chase and thought it would be easier to chase. The pitch was slower than I thought and did not particularly spin and we bowled tight lines. On a slow wicket with variable bounce, we had a couple of catchers on the leg side and made a couple of decisions. Desperate for sure. The boys were fantastic against South Africa. We have an ageing side but everyone throws themselves around,’ said Cummins in a post-match presentation.
‘Chuffed with keeping them to 240–anything under 300, really. I was one of those guys with hearts fluttering but Head takes the game on. I think the selectors backed him even when he had a broken hand. It was a big risk and it paid off. How fun is it to watch him? It was awesome to play and the passion in India is unrivalled. You just have to go and win a World Cup. You cannot wait for it. It was a shift after two games. The openers were really aggressive and it was a total buy-in from everyone. We will remember this year for a long, long time. This pips it all,’ he added.
Coming to the match, Australia opted to bowl first and bundled out India for 240 in 50 overs. On a tough batting surface, skipper Rohit Sharma (47 in 31 balls, with four boundaries and three sixes), Virat Kohli (54 in 63 balls, with four boundaries) and KL Rahul (66 in 107 balls, with one four) posted important knocks.
Mitchell Starc (3/55) was the pick of the bowlers for Australia. Skipper Pat Cummins (2/34) and Josh Hazlewood (2/60) also bowled well. Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell got wickets each.
In the chase of 241, India started off really well and had the Aussies down at 47/3. Knocks from Travis Head (137 in 120 balls, with 15 fours and four sixes) and Marnus Labuschagne (58 in 110 balls, with four boundaries) left the Indian team without answers and guided them to a seven-wicket win.
Mohammed Shami took one wicket, while Jasprit Bumrah took two wickets.
Travis was given the ‘Player of the Match’ for his century.