The unexpected Pakistan vs. India Champions Trophy Final 2017 is enough to apprise everyone right in the face that Pakistan is the nation that can rise at any moment from bottom to top no matter what the situation maybe. The team started the tournament with the extremely worst performance against their first match with India.
But despite the huge criticism made to the team, they still managed to comeback in the tournament by thrashing South Africa, Srilanka and the favorites of the tournament, England in the semi-final.
This was unpredictable and unexpected for not only cricket experts but also cricket fans. The eighth number team of the tournament managed to beat all the teams that are above them in rankings. It’s the first time that Pakistan has qualified for the Champions Trophy Final.
The arch-rival India with the talent pool of six times larger than Pakistan’s, cricket board six times much wealthier than Pakistan’s, their home league’s budget much greater than Pakistan’s PSL and with thirteen home series since 2009 to Pakistan’s not even one. Indian cricket must be startled to find itself against Pakistan in the final. This wasn’t in the predicted script; Indians might be heard whimpering.
The young and less experienced Pakistani squad including talented Hassan Ali, Shadab, Fakhar Zaman and Fahim Ashraf have incredibly punched way above its weight and outfaced all the favorites of the tournament. The team defied all the predictions and logics of experts by appearing on the top of the chart.
The top test team and second best T20 team in the cricket world was underestimated to show any real play in ODIs, but it managed to defy all the odds. The Pakistani team being deprived of the matches and almost no home series, few international matches, tiny but skilled home league and devoid of nurseries, it was hardly meant to be competing eye to eye with India at any level and at least at the lofty final of Champions Trophy.
That’s what happening today at The Oval, but it’s not happening for the first time. The nostalgia would lead you to jump back in the past in ’92 World Cup final when Pakistan was least expected to be in final. Despite players’ injuries and unfitness, the Imran eleven not only managed to face the England in final but also trounced the favorites of ’92 and carried the majestic trophy.
Not far but in 2014, the Pakistan Hockey team utterly defeated the Indian team in the semi-final of Hockey Champions Trophy. The Pakistani Hockey team was although not given any salary from several months with scanty facilities at that time but the team managed to play for the country despite the inconvenience they were facing.
This evinces that Pakistan with no such exalted boards and services, and no prior experience even can batter the high-ranked ones. If the teams would be given proper and healthy environment, then they can certainly do wonders.
Winning and losing is though the part of the game but putting up a good fight is what always expected from the weakest even. To not let the opponent win easily, to put them in struggle and to deliver a good show by tough fight is what makes any team champion and not winning the trophy particularly. But how saccharine win it would be if it comes to Pakistan.
Pakistan might not be perfect and that no one is ever but if you are looking to vanquish and batter the team then watch out, because there is another thing coming to you.