India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni praised the mental resilience of his side after they beat England by just five runs in a thrilling Champions Trophy final at Edgbaston on Sunday.
England, still to win a global one-day international match after what was their 5th defeat in a final, were 110 for four come the 18th over chasing 130 after India made 129 for 7 in a match reduced by rain from 50 to 20 overs per side.
But Ishant Sharma, having been struck for 6 and bowled successive wides, took 2 wickets in 2 balls to remove Eoin Morgan (33) and Ravi Bopara (30) after they rescued England from the depths of 46 for four with a stand of 64.
That started a collapse that saw 4 wickets lost for 3 runs in 8 balls with tail ender James Tredwell unable to hit the six off the last delivery of the match that would have given England victory.
It's important to be positive. I said let's seem for a good start, that's something that's very critical, don't look at the result, explain Dhoni when asked what he told his team when they took the field in defence of a modest total.
The first and foremost thing was don't look up, God is not coming to save you, you have to fight it out, added the wicketkeeper-batsman , one of just 3 survivors along with Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina from the India team that beat Sri Lanka in a Mumbai final to win the 2011 World Cup.
We are the number one ranked team, let play like that.
This win against the match hosts, albeit in front of a capacity Edgbaston crowd dominated by India fans, meant the World Cup holders, in what is set to be the last Champions Trophy before its replacement by a World Test Championship, win all 5 of their matches after a pair of warm-up victories.
Even the warm-up games for us are important because if we lose one then people start saying we can't play overseas, said Kohli, who top-scored for India with a rapid 43.The guys winning 7games out of 7 and showing their character like we did, everyone's really happy. England needed 20 to succeed off 16 balls with 6 wickets standing only to 'choke' in a manner more usually associated with South Africa.
Clearly from there you would back yourself to win more times than you would lose in that situation, but it shows how fast games can change in Twenty20 when you lose a couple of wickets, said dejected England captain Alastair Cook. Asked if this was his worst day on England duty, the starter replied, as a captain, yeah.It's a tough pill to swallow at the moment. We had high hopes coming in today of achieving something special.
We got close. I am proud of the way the lads have fought from being under a fair bit of pressure in this match. Cook was unusually vocal in his criticism of Australian television umpire Bruce Oxenford for giving out Ian Bell stumped by Dhoni off left-arm spin bowler Ravindra Jadeja, the man-of-the-match for his 33 not out and 2 wickets for 24 runs.
It was a close call but Oxenford ruled in India’s' favors and a disbelieving Bell, on his Warwickshire home ground, was out for 13 with England in trouble at 46 for four. I thought it was a poor decision," said Cook.
V Kohli -43(34)
R Jadeja -33(25)
E Morgan -33(30)
R Bopara -30(25)
R Jadeja, R Ashwin, I Sharma-each-2 Wickets
Player of the match