India Stays Calm to Win Rain-Hit Champions Trophy Cricket Final
Chasing a target of 130 in a match reduced to 20 overs a side from the scheduled 50 at Edgbaston, Birmingham, yesterday, England needed 20 off the last 16 balls with Ravi Bopara and Eoin Morgan at the crease. The home team lost four wickets for three runs and finished on 124-8.
India, which ended the eight-nation International Cricket Council event unbeaten, added the Champions Trophy to the World Cup title it secured in 2011. The win made Mahendra Singh Dhoni the first national cricket captain to lead his team to victory in all three major ICC competitions after India also won the inaugural World Twenty20 in 2007.
“They handled the pressure really well,” Dhoni said of his team at the post-match presentation. “People talk a lot about technique, but good players adapt to pressure well.”
Off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin took two wickets for 14 and man-of-the-match Ravindra Jadeja claimed 2-24 after scoring 33 not out off 25 balls in India’s total of 129-7.
The final, which had been scheduled to start at 10:30 a.m. local time yesterday, was delayed until 4:20 p.m. by rain and there were further interruptions for more showers.
Virat Kohli top scored with 43 for India, with Shikhar Dhawan adding 31 to finish as the tournament’s top run-getter with 363. Bopara led England’s bowlers with 3-20, including the wickets of Suresh Raina and Dhoni in a maiden over.
England captain Alastair Cook was dismissed in the second over of his team’s run chase, caught in the slips with the score on 3. Dhoni then stumped Jonathan Trott on 20, and Joe Root was out for 7.
Ian Bell was given out following a video review of another stumping, in a close decision over whether he’d made his ground by the time the bails were dislodged.
Morgan (33 runs) and Bopara (30 runs) lifted England to 110-4 with a 64-run fifth-wicket stand. The game then turned when they were caught in successive balls by Ashwin off Ishant Sharma. Jos Buttler and Tim Bresnan soon followed, and Stuart Broad and James Tredwell failed to get to the victory target.
“It’s tough to take,” Cook said. “I’m proud of the way the lads played, we just came up a little bit short.”
England had been seeking its first global 50-over trophy, having lost three World Cup finals and finished as the runner-up at the 2004 Champions Trophy. England won the World Twenty20 in 2010.
India, a two-time World Cup champion, was joint winner of the Champions Trophy with Sri Lanka in 2002 in another game disrupted by rain.
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