Five key moments that propelled Pakistan to Champions Trophy glory


This made it hard to counter his approach during the Champions Trophy final, at The Oval, in London, on Sunday. Very quick, very sharp bouncer at Bumrah's head, he waves his bat, trying to fend it off, gets the top edge up in the air and a delighted Sarfraz barely waits to get the ball in glove before he celebrates.

Fakhar got another life, and the Pakistan opener embraced it. Just when even their most loyal supporters were beginning to lose faith, Pakistan bounced back with commitment, belief and desire. Underdogs Pakistan stunned all and sundry by making the final for the very first time.

All top nations refuse to play in Pakistan where security is at a premium.

Amir, who missed the semi-final win over England with a back spasm, reduced the defending champions to 54-5.

The last few overs saw Hafeez thrashing Indian bowlers all around the park. It was a high-octane and thrilling contest.

India were eventually dismissed for 158, with 19.3 overs to spare, losing by a massive 180 runs.

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But Pakistan collapse to 162 for seven before an unbroken stand of 75 between skipper Sarfraz (61 not out) and Mohammad Amir (28 not out) sees them win what is a virtual quarter-final. This was Pakistan's largest margin of victory, by runs, in 129 ODIs against India, surpassing their 159-run success at Delhi in 2005. This was no innings.

That extras cost India in the finals would be an understatement.

Hardik Pandya smashed 76 off 43 balls, including six huge sixes, to give India hope of a dramatic revival but he was run out following a mix-up with Ravindra Jadeja and left the arena shaking his head in an obvious state of frustration. "Majority of them in Pakistani team are new.and they defeated us", he said.

"As I said, you can do little to control when people are going well like that, and we certainly tried to make them hit in areas that we felt it would be uncomfortable, but we just didn't have anything going our way in that partnership (Zaman-Azhar)". But the key ingredient was reverse swing. The wicketkeeper-batsman made a statement even before he took questions from the press and appealed that this victory should open the gate for worldwide teams to tour Pakistan in the future. Their performance in the field was equally selfless.

India blew the chance to seal a clean sweep as victory would have made Kohli's team world No.1 in one-day and Test cricket.

Hasan Ali also answered his critics who said he was not capable of performing on the global stage after playing in the PSL the past two years. For a side who have not played a single match on home soil in more than eight years, this is unprecedented glory. Hopefully, this will boost Pakistan cricket.