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Other SportsCricket World Cup: 'A lot better than being sat on the couch'...

Cricket World Cup: ‘A lot better than being sat on the couch’ – Australia hero Head in disbelief after final century

Travis Head was in disbelief after hitting a brilliant century in Australia’s Cricket World Cup final win over India, revealing he did not even expect to feature at the tournament after suffering a fractured hand in September.

Head missed the first five games of Australia’s World Cup campaign after sustaining the injury in a one-day international against South Africa in mid-September, flying out to India late before finally returning to action against New Zealand on October 28.

Less than a month after marking his comeback with a crucial 109 against the Black Caps, the left-hander hit another ton to help decide Sunday’s World Cup final.

Coming after Jasprit Bumrah reduced Australia to 47-3, Head’s brilliant 137 off 120 dashed any hopes of an Indian revival as Australia cruised to their target of 240, capturing a record-extending sixth title with a six-wicket win.

Head fell just short of capping his incredible display with a trophy-clinching six when he was caught by Shubman Gill on the penultimate ball of the match, but that couldn’t sour a remarkable day for the 29-year-old.

Speaking to reporters amid Australia’s celebrations, Head said: “Not in a million years did I think that would happen! What an amazing day. I’m just thrilled to be a part of it.

“It is a lot better than being sat on the couch at home! I’m very lucky that everything went well and I was able to get back and the support that the boys showed… I didn’t think this would happen.

“I was nervous in the first 20 balls but Marnus [Labuschagne] batted brilliantly and it is great to bat with him. It was an amazing partnership.”

Exceptional displays with the ball helped Australia set the tone, with Mitchell Starc finishing with a hat-trick while Josh Hazlewood and skipper Pat Cummins added two wickets apiece after putting India in to bat.

“We knew the wicket might get tough but it turned out to be a great decision to bowl first because the pitch did get better as the day went on,” Head added.

“What we did at the toss paid dividends. Nice to be a part of it and play a role. It will be a good few days now!”

Head might have been denied the decisive boundary late on, with Glenn Maxwell finishing things off after his departure, but he did have a moment to savour in the field.

His stunning diving catch to account for Rohit Sharma set the tone as the Australian attack tore through the hosts with the ball, and Head was as surprised as anyone that he managed to cling on.

“Rohit Sharma was probably the unluckiest man in the world!” he said.

“I do work hard on my catching but I couldn’t imagine holding onto that. It is a nice thing I’ll be able to look back on later in my life.”

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.
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