Australia clinched their sixth World Cup title with a comprehensive six-wicket victory over India in the final of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad on Sunday (November 19).
Invited to bat first, the hosts posted a below-par 240/10 in their allotted 50 overs. Indian batters found it tough on a slow pitch despite dominating the first powerplay. KL Rahul (66 off 107) and Virat Kohli (54 off 63) scored steady half-centuries while skipper Rohit Sharma played a dazzling knock of 31-ball 47 at the top.
Australia’s pace trio of Mitchell Starc (3-55), Pat Cummins (2-34) and Josh Hazlewood (2-6) bowled exceptionally well, picking up seven scalps among them. Spinners Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell also claimed one wicket each.
Defending the total, the Men in Blue needed early breakthroughs and the fast-bowling duo of Mohammad Shami and Jasprit Bumrah provided the team with three wickets in quick succession. While Shami dismissed David Warner (7), Bumrah got rid of Mitchell Marsh (15) and Steve Smith (4) as India reduced the Aussies to 47/3 in seven overs.
Amid the pressure situation, Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne rose to the occasion for Australia. With the required run-rate under check, the pair batted sensibly and took a calculated risk to put the Indian bowling attack on the backfoot.
In particular, Head was severe on the Indian bowlers. The southpaw notched up a brilliant hundred in 95 balls and got out on 137 off 120 balls when the team needed only two runs. In the end, Glenn Maxwell hit the winning runs whereas Labuschagne finished with 57 off 109 balls to take Australia over the line with 42 deliveries to spare.
Cricket fraternity lauded Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne for their match-winning 192-run stand under immense pressure and congratulated the Australian team on winning the World Cup.
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