Travis Head Brings Down High-Flying India As Australia Lift Sixth ODI World Cup Title
Ahmedabad: India were the best team of the 2023 ODI World Cup for 10 matches, till the semifinal.
But, in the match that mattered most to Rohit Sharma & Co., the men in blue were a poor second as their nemesis Australia lifted the coveted trophy for the sixth time.
Bowled out for a below-par 240 after being asked to bat first in the final on Sunday, India were done in by a super special knock by Travis Head, who cracked 138 to guide the Aussies to a comprehensive 6-wicket win.
The Aussies came out all guns blazing while chasing a modest target. But Mohammad Shami dismissed David Warner with his first ball and Jasprit Bumrah struck twice to reduced Australia to 47/3.
The Indians were in with a chance and all pumped up.
But then Head silenced a crowd of nearly 1.3 lakh spectators at Narendra Modi Stadium with an innings of a lifetime.
Head was Man-of-the-Match in the semifinal against South Africa also, thus emulating the feats of India’s Mohinder Amarnath and Australian Shane Warne. Back in June, Head had demolished India with a power-packed 163 in the World Test Championship final as well.
Marnus Labuschagne played the ideal foil, batting calmly at the other end to be unbeaten on 58. Head and Labuschagne added a record match-winning 198-run partnership for the fourth wicket, blunting everything that the tournament’s best bowling attack thus far — Bumrah, Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja and Mohammad Siraj – threw at them.
Brief scores: India 240 all out in 50 overs (KL Rahul 66, Virat Kohli 54, Rohit Sharma 47; Mitchell Starc 3/55, Pat Cummins 2/34, Josh Hazlewood 2/60). Australia 241/4 in 43 overs (Travis Head 137, Marnus Labuschagne 58 not out; Jasprit Bumrah 2/43).
Result: Australia champions — won by 6 wickets.
Man of the Final: Travis Head.
Man of the Tournament: Virat Kohli.