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Hafeez hails Pakistan spirit for India stunner

Revelation and redemption helped Pakistan turn world cricket’s order upside down as Fakhar Zaman’s maiden one-day global century and Mohammad Amir’s brilliant new-ball spell underpinned a landslide 180-run win over India in the Champions
Trophy final.It was exactly two weeks ago when the Virat Kohli-led side thrashed Pakistan by 124 runs in their opening match of the eight-team marquee event at Edgbaston.Preview: A wounded Pakistan will be out for revenge while India will aim to maintain their dominance when the arch-rivals meet in the final of the Champions Trophy cricket tournament at The Oval in London on Sunday.He trapped Rohit Sharma lbw for nought with a swinging delivery and removed India talisman Virat Kohli with another fine ball which the captain could only edge to point for five. But on the day that really mattered, Fakhar Zaman’s maiden ODI hundred and Mohammed Amir’s stellar bowling performance made sure the Men in Blue couldn’t retain the Champions Trophy.Fakhar shared a fluent century opening partnership with Azhar Ali (59) and unleashed a barrage of attacking strokes all around a sun-kissed ground to give Pakistan real hope of upsetting the defending champions.The neighbouring countries have moved on from years of political conflicts but emotions will run high as millions of supporters around the world watch the first major cricket final between the teams since the 2007 Twenty20 World Cup.Fakhar, perhaps annoyed at role in the run out, drove left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja for six and cut him for four off successive balls. It’s a young team, credit goes to my boys, this tournament can be a great booster for us.Fakhar continued to a 92-ball century, finally falling to Indian bowler Hardik Pandya in the 33rd over.The now fit-again Amir removes all of India’s top three as the champions slump to 33 for three in nine overs before being dismissed for just 158.Mohammad Hafeez hailed Pakistan’s team spirit as the key to their stunning Champions Trophy final triumph against India.India, who had demolished Pakistan during the group stage of the tournament, knew they needed an impressive batting display of their own if they were to chase down their target. “Hopefully, this win will boost Pakistan cricket and teams will soon be able to come to Pakistan to play”.Kohli accepted his side had been second best as he acknowledged Pakistan’s “amazing tournament”.”It’s all about momentum and after the South Africa game, the way we were playing, I think that was outstanding”. Fakhar ought to have been out for 3 in the fourth over, caught behind, but Jasprit Bumrah delivered a no ball. Congratulations to Pakistan. The way they turned things around, it was wonderful.But at 200 for two, Pakistan were well-placed for a big score, with Hafeez bringing up the 300 when he pulled the generally admirable Kumar for six.”What we are going to try to do is repeat the similar sort of cricket that we have played so far, knowing the strengths and weaknesses they have”, Kohli said.The “Law of Averages” were certainly going to catch up with India’s “Big Three” after their brilliant run in the tournament.