• Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif has praised all-round efforts of the national side before announcing a bounty of PKR one crore each to Men in Green for lifting the maiden title of the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy after routing arch-rivals India at the Kennington Oval on Sunday (June 18).

    The 67-year-old Sharif declared the reward for every player soon after they returned home from England and Wales on Tuesday which further saw hero’s welcome was given to the players, who reached Lahore and Karachi Airport respectively, before skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed spoke to the media gathering.

    The Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb revealed the reward was declared following remarkable performance from every player in the eight-nation tournament.

    Marriyum further went on to say it’s heartening to see players gave a hard fight to keep the spirit of the nation alive while adding backing players to the full potential will improve the quality of sports in Pakistan.

    “For showing an outstanding performance, the team deserves appreciation,” Marriyum told Dawn.

    Marriyum has expressed the satisfaction over team’s all round performance which according to her has held heads high of the nation by bringing coveted trophy home.

    Marriyum further revealed the players have given their best while outplaying everyone; be it in batting, bowling or fielding which is a thankless job in the field of a sport.

    It’s pertinent to note, Pakistan lost its tournament opener against India by 124 runs on June 4, before making a stunning comeback to register its name into the history following brilliant performance from youngsters in particular which has lifted the morale of the nation, reflects Marriyum.

    It’s pertinent to note, after winning four matches out of five, Pakistan has leapfrogged to sixth position with 95 rating points to their name, in the latest One-day International cricket rankings released by world cricket governing by ICC.

    Interestingly, making things easier, Pakistan is likely to get direct entry for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 for what the cut-off date is September 30, 2017, and the coveted event is scheduled in England and Wales.

    In the high-octane grand finale between India-Pakistan which was viewed by around one million viewers according to the world media, the Men in Green had registered a whopping 180-run win over Virat Kohli-led side which saw India bundled out for 158 in 33.3 overs, while chasing the daunting target of 339.

    Tahir Ibn Manzoor is a staffer at Sportzwiki.com, who follows cricket like food after listening to running commentary on a transistor radio when he was only eight, and penned down the scorecard when he turned 11. He Tweets @TahirIbnManzoor

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