Defending 240 runs or less in World Cup finals; India need to repeat history

Image Source : AP Pat Cummins celebrating Virat Kohli’s wicket in the 2023 World Cup final

Playing in their fourth ICC ODI World Cup final, the Indian team was bowled out on just 240 runs against Australia while batting first on Sunday, November 19. Rohit Sharma gave India another high-flying start but Australian bowlers pulled off a stunning comeback to put India under pressure at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. 

KL Rahul top-scored with 66 runs off 107 balls and in-form Virat Kohli registered his ninth fifty-plus score in the tournament to put India on track for a big total after successively losing three wickets. But Australian bowlers proved their superiority in ICC knockouts to restrict India to 240 runs.

So, will the Men in Blue will be able to defend the 240 runs against Australia’s in-form batting attack? 

Only once in ODI World Cup history, a team has managed to defend 240 or less total while batting first in the finals. Kapil Dev-led India famously defended 183 runs against West Indies in the final of the 1983 World Cup. West Indies were bowled out on just 140 runs at the Lord’s and Indian bowlers need to pull off a similar impact as they chase their first-ever ICC title in ten years.

India Playing XI: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj

Australia Playing XI: Travis Head, David Warner, Mitchell Marsh, Steven Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Josh Inglis (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins (c), Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood

More to follow…

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