What a thrilling way to emerge the World Champion. India defended their title in the Blind Cricket World Cup after defeating Pakistan by two wickets and with just eight balls to spare in a thrilling final at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. It was a perfect India-Pakistan final with the two teams fighting till the end fiercely just like the usual India-Pakistan match.
Batting first, posted 308 runs in the allotted 40 overs. Badar Munir top scored with 57 runs, followed by Riasat Khan (48) and skipper Nisar Ali (47). Chasing a huge target, India started off their chase in a cracking manner reaching to 111/1 after 15 overs. But soon they lost lost two quick wickets and were reduced to 116/3 after 16th over.
Skipper Ajay Tiwari along with Sunil then took the charge to take India to a total of 190/3 after 25 overs.
But India again suffered a setback after losing the skipper’s wicket. Ajay Thakur’s dismissal was followed by two hasty wickets. But in the penultimate over of the match they held their nerves to romp home.
For the final, legendary batsman of Pakistan and former International Cricket Council President Zaheer Abbas. “It is great that these blind cricketers have the heart to play this game. Cricket is a game that everybody likes so it has become popular among blind people,” he said.
In a Blind Cricket match, players in both the teams are divided into three categories such as B1, B2, and B3. A minimum of four will be totally blind players (B1), three has to be partially blind players (B2) and a maximum of four partially sighted players (B3) can be in the team.
The ball used is significantly larger than the regular cricket ball and is filled with ball bearings t make sound. The bowlers bowl underarm and the batsman hits the ball listening to the sound of the ball using the ‘sweep shot’.
Former Indian wicketkeeper Syed Kirmani, who is also the Patron of India’s blind cricket, was also present in the stadium. Kirmani said, “I think they are a great source of inspiration and motivation to any normal disciple of sport. They should be ahead of all of us so that we get inspired. They deserved more publicity but they are getting to play at an international stadium like Sharjah is the least encouragement.”