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Pakistan set 339-run target for India in Champions Trophy final

19 June 2017

Pakistan's record-breaking 180-run win over arch-rivals and title-holders India in the Champions Trophy final at The Oval on Sunday completed a remarkable turnaround for Sarfraz Ahmed's side in the space of just a few weeks.

They didn't stop there as they came out with their best show in the final to bag their first Champions Trophy title.

And the captain credited his men for the strong comeback.

Ironically, the mark they had to top was the 322 for three made by Sri Lanka in seven-wicket win over India at The Oval on June 8 - the lone group-stage loss suffered by Kohli's side. "After losing the first game, we had no chance to lose again", said Hafeez, who played an important role in the win with a classy 57 not out. "We have no hesitation or shame to admit we didn't play our best game today", the Indian skipper added.

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In reply, India were all bundled out for 158 runs in 30.3 overs as no batsman, barring Hardik Pandya, offered any resistance against a disciplined bowling effort from Pakistan.

Mohammad Amir, who missed the semi-final due to a back spasm but picked up 3/16 in the final, has gained 16 slots to reach the 21st place while fellow left-armer Junaid Khan has moved up nine places to 47th position.

"We don't take any opposition for granted and we are looking to play some great cricket here".

Fakhar Zaman of Pakistan celebrates his century in the ICC Champions Trophy Final on Sunday.

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Pakistan have been starved of worldwide cricket in their own country since an attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in 2009, forcing them to play their "home" series at neutral venues.

The 27-year-old proceeded to share a 128-run opening stand with Azhar before posting his maiden one-day global century, brought up in 92 balls. "I want to congratulate Pakistan, they had an fantastic tournament". Pakistan made sure it did not turn out to be a costly mistake, though, as Amir dismissed him next ball.

India, who entered the field as favorites after winning the previous match against Pakistan in the tournament, had a shaky start when fiery Pakistani left-arm fast bowler Mohammad Amir dismissed Indian opener Rohit Sharma for a duck.

"If there's been a more improbable Pakistan triumph than this, it's yet to be written", said Osman Samiuddin, author of a definitive book on Pakistan cricket, The Unquiet Ones.

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Former New Zealand captain and swashbuckling batsman Brendon McCullum said: "Brilliant from Pakistan!".

Pakistan set 339-run target for India in Champions Trophy final