The beginning of the end for India came right with the call to field first after winning the toss
: The hopes of more than a billion Indian seemed to have come a cropper on Sunday when their national team was handed a humiliating defeat by arch-rivals Pakistan in the final match of Champions Trophy, 2017. Played at the Oval in London, the match saw India crumbling in their chase of 339 runs and getting bundled out for a lowly 158.
Worse, the debacle for India – their biggest margin of defeat in an ICC tournament yet – came in their first clash with Pakistan in a summit match since 2007. Before this, India’s 125-run loss to Australia in the 2003 World Cup final, at Johannesburg’s New Wanderers Stadium in South Africa, had been their most crushing defeat.
While it was embarrassing for India, the emotions on Pakistan side were those of jubilation that comes with unexpected triumph. At the 8th spot in ODI rankings, Pakistan were the lowest-ranked team at the beginning of Champions Trophy 2017. But the way they downed the favourites like South Africa, Sri Lanka and England, and finally India, will be remembered by cricket enthusiasts for a very long time.
Among the most spectacular takeaways from Sunday’s game were the phenomenal opening spell by left-arm Pakistan pacer Mohammad Amir and the brilliant maiden century by Fakhar Zaman, besides sublime field performance by Sarfraz Ahmed’s boys.
Here are five turning points in the match that took the game away from India:
1. The toss: Banking on India’s recent record of successfully chasing down big targets, India skipper Virat Kohli opted to put Pakistan in to bat first. This, it turns out, would have been a good toss to lose for India, as Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed also said he, too, would have elected to field if he had won the toss.()