Former Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has congratulated Australia for their “commanding performance” in the World Cup 2023 final against India. The ultimate face-off, at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday, saw the Pat Cummins-led side getting the better of Men in Blue.
In a post on Instagram Stories, the Pakistan batter said, “Congratulations Cricket Australia. What a commanding performance in the final.”
Legendary Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar felt that luck did not favour India, who kicked off their campaign journey on a promising note. In the semis, Rohit Sharma and his men got the better of New Zealand by 70 runs
“India played the final, it’s not an easy job. They reached the final by decimating all the other teams. Unfortunately, they couldn’t replicate their performances in the final. They’ve reached close to winning the trophy on many occasions in the last 12 years but couldn’t win it,” Akhtar said on his YouTube channel.
For Virat Kohli and Mohammad Shami, Akhtar added, “India has the best batting with Kohli scoring the most runs, Shami picked the most wickets. But unfortunately, luck hasn’t been in their favour.”
Akhtar also spoke about Australia’s fine skill of holding their “nerve in big matches.”
“Australia just know how to hold their nerve in big matches. I thought Australia’s approach was good and India’s approach was a bit timid,” the 48-year-old added.
Batting first, India posted a total of 240 in the World Cup final. India wicketkeeper KL Rahul emerged as his side’s highest scorer with 66 off 107 balls. He was ably supported by Kohli who produced a vital knock of 54 runs in 63 deliveries. Rahul and Kohli’s crucial partnership of 67 runs helped India post a defendable target.
During the run chase, Australia lost their three wickets in quick succession but later Marnus Labuschagne and opening batter Travis Head appeared as saviours. While Head notched a sensational century against India, Labuschagne remained unbeaten on 58.
Australia lifted the World Cup trophy for the sixth time. Head was adjudged Player of the Match for his stupendous knock of 137 runs.