AHMEDABAD (Narendra Modi Stadium): Australians, beating India by six wickets in the final, lifted the ICC Cricket World Cup for the 6th time here on Sunday (19th of Nov, 2023) in front of 132,000 enthusiastic Indian fans.
After winning the toss, Australians had asked Indian cricketers to bat first who barely managed to score 240 runs in stipulated 50 overs due to failure of its batting line.
Major scorers for India were Kannaur Lokesh Rahul (whose bat yielded 66 runs) and Virat Kohli (who scored 54). runs remained the main scores from Indian side.
241 was a meager target to achieve for the 5-time champ Australia that (with the help of Man of the Match Travis Head’s 137 and Marnus Labuschagne’s 58 runs) achieved the goal at the loss of 4 wickets in 43 overs.
APP/AFP reporting the Indian innings added: Fast bowler Mitchell Starc took three wickets as Australia dismissed India for 240 in the World Cup final in front of nearly 130,000 fans in Ahmedabad on Sunday.
Five-time champions Australia elected to field first and the players backed up skipper Pat Cummins’ decision with disciplined bowling and impressive fielding at the world’s biggest cricket stadium filled with a sea of India’s blue jerseys.
Australia will need 241 to secure their sixth World Cup title. India are chasing their third crown after 1983 and 2011.
Virat Kohli and KL Rahul hit 54 and 66 respectively after captain Rohit Sharma’s attacking 47 but the ball dominated the bat on a slow, dry pitch.
Starc, a left-arm quick, returned figures of 3-55 while fellow pace bowlers Cummins and Josh Hazlewood claimed two each to end the innings in 50 overs.
Wicketkeeper Josh Inglis claimed five catches in a record for a World Cup final
Rohit came out attacking and hit a six in the fourth over followed by a four, but lost partner Shubman Gill, for four, off Starc.
Kohli started cautiously but soon gained steam with three successive boundaries off Starc to bring the capacity crowd to its feet.
Australia introduced spin in the eighth over with Glenn Maxwell replacing Hazlewood and he soon claimed the big breakthrough of Rohit.
The India captain mistimed a shot and Travis Head took a stunning catch while running backwards from cover point.
India, who came into the contest undefeated with 10 wins, slipped to 81-3 in 10.2 overs when Cummins sent back the in-form Shreyas Iyer, who came into the game on the back of two centuries, caught behind for four.
Kohli was joined by Rahul as the two went about their repair job in a partnership of 67 which was briefly interrupted by a pro-Palestinian pitch invader.
India went without a boundary for 16.1 overs with some disciplined Australian bowling mixed with sharp fielding denying the batting pair easy runs.
Kohli reached his fifth successive fifty-plus score in the tournament and Rahul broke the shackles with a four off Maxwell.
Cummins then produced a delivery to back up his pre-match words of “nothing more satisfying than hearing a big crowd go silent” when he bowled Kohli.
Kohli chopped a short-of-a-length delivery onto his stumps as he stood in disbelief before trudging off and Cummins celebrated.
The star batsman, who smashed a record 50th ODI century in the semi-final against New Zealand to surpass compatriot Sachin Tendulkar’s 49 tons, finishes the tournament with 765 runs at an average of over 95.
Rahul reached his fifty in 86 balls and attempted to anchor the innings to the end but Starc dismissed the batsman caught behind and the rest of the order didn’t last long.
Innings of Australia:
APP/AFP while commenting on the Australian batting, added: Travis Head’s impressive hundred sealed Australia’s sixth World Cup title as they dashed the dreams of billions of fans with a six-wicket win over previously unbeaten hosts India on Sunday (19th of Nov, 2023).
Opening batsman Head scored 137 off just 120 balls, including 15 fours and four sixes, before being dismissed with Australia just two runs shy of victory.
His innings was just the seventh hundred in a World Cup final and the third by an Australian batsman.
Head also shared a fourth-wicket stand of 192 with Marnus Labuschagne (58 not out) as Australia chased down a modest target of 241 with seven overs to spare.
Earlier, Australia restricted previously unbeaten tournament hosts India to 240 all out as they silenced a crowd of over 92,000 fans at the Narendra Modi Stadium — a ground named after the Indian Prime Minister.
Left-arm quick Mitchell Starc took 3-55 and Australia captain Pat Cummins, who won the toss, a miserly 2-34 in his maximum 10 overs.
KL Rahul top-scored for India with 66 but hit only one boundary in 107 balls. Star batsman Virat Kohli made 54 after India captain Rohit Sharma struck a fluent 47 off just 31 balls opening the innings.