Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed said he hoped his side's stunning 180-run Champions Trophy final win over arch-rivals India would be a catalyst for the full return of worldwide cricket to his homeland.
ICC Champions Trophy 2017 winners Pakistan have four players in the selected line-up, with Fakhar Zaman, who scored a match-winning 114 in the final, chosen to open the batting with India's Shikhar Dhawan.
Jubilant photographs of Pakistan cricket fans dancing in the streets were plastered all over national newspapers Monday after their eighth-ranked team produced a thrilling win against arch-rivals India in the Champions Trophy final. Mohammad Hafeez and Azhar Ali also notched up half centuries.
The 28-year-old skipper partially blamed pacer Jasprit Bumrah's no-ball which gave opener and century-maker Fakhar Zaman - who was on three at that time - a life which helped Pakistan post a massive total.
Sarfraz was chosen as the captain following his inspirational leadership during the 18-day tournament that was the cornerstone of his team's 180-run victory over India in front of a full house. However, he bowled the spell of the competition as he accounted for the India's top three - Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli.
The Green Brigade entered the just concluded eight-team Champions Trophy as the lowest-ranked team at No.8 but raised themselves from the ashes to emerge champions at The Oval on Sunday.
"However, by the time it lifted the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 at The Oval, it was undoubtedly playing its best cricket", he added.
"They also came to express their skill and win a cricket game and they certainly did", Kohli told a news conference.
Fast bowlers Junaid Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Hassan shared 28 wickets between them in the tournament, while wrist-spinner Adil Rashid finished with seven wickets with an economy rate of 4.73.
"Pakistan champion, rolled over Indian team", leading Urdu language Daily Jang printed across its front page.
"Pakistan had a dream run in the tournament, but doubts remained over its ability to tackle the pressures of an India game, let alone that of a final".
"We want to be a little more consistent as a team", coach Mickey Arthur said.
"I hope that the nation of Pakistan is really happy tonight because they deserve it. We played very well and now we have won the final", he said. Did you think any more pleasant in the match? But it were India who capitalised on a lot of them.
India still had three wickets in hand but the deafening cheers from the Pakistan fans made clear that the end was nigh.
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