Tendulkar leads India to title win

2008-03-04 00:00

Sachin Tendulkar led India to the triangular one-day cricket title when they beat Australia in a thrilling second final here yesterday.

The tourists made 258-9 in their 50 overs then restricted the home side to 249 to claim a nine-run win and take an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the last of the three-match final Tendulkar (34) led the batting with 91, before newcomer Praveen Kumar tore through the Australian top order, claiming Adam Gilchrist, skipper Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke with just 32 runs on the board.

“Once again we found ourselves three for 30 and behind the eight-ball,” he said.

Ponting was gracious in defeat, saying the Indians deserved their victory. “All credit has to go to the Indian team for the way they’ve played in the last week,” Ponting said.

Kumar came back at the death to bowl Brett Lee and finish the match with 4-46 from 10 overs to signal his arrival on the international scene.

“Most of those guys don’t have a secure place in this team right now,” Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said. “But this win will give them ample confidence …”

Australian all-rounder James Hopes led a rearguard action, scoring a career-high 63, but he kept losing batting partners and was the last man out in the final over.

India made a great start when Gilchrist edged a ball from Kumar to wicketkeeper Dhoni to be out for two. Andrew Symonds (42) and Matthew Hayden (55) recovered and got the Australians back on track until Hayden was run out.

Symonds also proved his strength when he flattened a streaker who ran on the field.

Australia needed 13 runs from the last over, but were bowled out for 249 with two balls to spare.

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