‘Tough pill to swallow but we have our heads held high’

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India finished as the runner-up in the ODI World Cup 2023 after facing a six-wicket loss against Australia in the finals at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday, November 19.

Mohammed Shami, who finished as the highest wicket-taker in the marquee event with 24 scalps from seven games, reacted after India’s heartbreaking loss.

“Tough pill to swallow for us but we have our heads held high,” the 33-year-old said following the World Cup final defeat. 

After winning 10 games in a row in the ODI World Cup 2023, India were favourites to beat Australia in the summit clash on Sunday. It is interesting to note that India and Australia began their campaign in the showpiece event by facing each other at Chepauk on October 8. The ‘Men in Blue’ emerged victorious by six wickets. On Sunday, the margin of victory was identical but the result was exactly the opposite.

Mohammed Shami’s impressive ODI World Cup 2023 numbers

The experienced pacer was not picked in the playing XI for India’s first four games in the 10-team ournament. However, he got his opportunity after Hardik Pandya suffered an injury during the game against Bangladesh and was subsequently ruled out of the competition.

In seven games, Shami picked up an awe-inspiring 24 wickets to finish as the leading wicket-taker in the tournament. His average of 10.71 and a strike rate of 12.21 accentuate how great a tournament he had with the ball. He became the first player to pick up three five-wicket hauls during a single edition of the ODI World Cup. Shami’s figures of 7/57 against New Zealand in the semi-finals were the best for an Indian bowler in the international 50-over format. In the final, Shami gave India the initial breakthrough as he dismissed David Warner with his first delivery. That turned out to be his final wicket in the tournament.

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