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Sunday’s final brings back memories of March 23, 2003, when the Australian cricket team, on a 10-match unbeaten run, bossed India in the final in Johannesburg. At the ongoing World Cup, India are on a similar invincible run. However, Australia skipper Pat Cummins doesn’t like to live in past glory.
“Yeah, I mean, neither player from both sides were there in 2003, so it feels like a long time ago,” he said.
“But we know it’s going to be a packed house. There’s going to be 130,000 fans here supporting India. So it’s going to be awesome. They’ve been playing really well, undefeated in this tournament. But we know at our best we can give them a good shake. We’ve played them quite a lot over the last couple of years with success, so it’s all building up for a nice final,” he added.
The Narendra Modi Stadium is expected to be fully packed with a partisan crowd over a lakh cheering for the home side, but Cummins feels that the Aussies have their own ways to deal with it.
“Yeah, I think, on this scale it’s probably bigger than we would have experienced before, but it’s not something totally foreign to what we’ve had before. Everyone deals with it slightly differently. You see Davey (David Warner) probably dancing and winning the crowd over (and) other guys just staying in their own bubble – yeah, it should be good,” Cummins said.
“I think you’ve got to embrace it. The crowd’s obviously going to be very one-sided but, in sport there’s nothing more satisfying than hearing a big crowd go silent and that’s the aim for us tomorrow. Yeah, you’ve just got to embrace every part of it, every part of a final – even in the lead-up, there’s going to be noise and more people and interest, and you just can’t get overwhelmed,” he added.
“You’ve got to be up for it, you’ve got to love it, and just know whatever happens it’s fine, but you just want to finish the day with no regrets.
Ever since India broke their 12-year supremacy in 50-over World Cups, having won a hat-trick of titles in 1999, 2003 and 2007, Australia look to regain the legacy across all formats by lifting a record sixth 50-over World Cup title on Sunday. They are already on course, after having won the T20 World Cup in 2021, and also became Test world champions this year.