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Head hails recovery as batter smashes century in Australia World Cup win in India

AHMEDABAD, INDIA - NOVEMBER 19: Travis Head of Australia poses after being named Player of the Match following the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup India 2023 Final between India and Australia at Narendra Modi Stadium on November 19, 2023 in Ahmedabad, India. (Photo by Matthew Lewis-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)
Travis Head insisted being part of Australia’s Cricket World Cup final win was “a lot better than being sat on the coach at home” after the batter recovered from a fractured hand this autumn to knock a century to beat India in Ahmedabad on Sunday.
Travis Head insisted being part of Australia’s Cricket World Cup final win was “a lot better than being sat on the coach at home” after the batter recovered from a fractured hand this autumn to knock a century to beat India in Ahmedabad on Sunday. (Photo by Matthew Lewis-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)

Travis Head insisted being part of Australia’s Cricket World Cup final win was “a lot better than being sat on the coach at home” after the batter recovered from a fractured hand this autumn to knock a century to beat India in Ahmedabad on Sunday.

Head’s injury came on his side’s tour to South Africa in September and he missed the opening match of the tournament in India.

But Australia recovered from a campaign which saw them lose their two opening matches to beat India by six wickets in the final, who were unbeaten until Sunday’s match.

“I’m just thrilled to be a part of it,” Head said.

“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.”

The hosts set a target of 241 in front of 120,000 fans at the Narendra Modi Stadium with key knocks from KL Rahul (66), Virat Kohli (54) and Rohit Sharma (47).

But Head’s 137 and Labuschagne’s 58 did much of the heavy lifting for an Australia side who were looking for their sixth Cricket World Cup title.

Head departed with Australia needing just two runs, which Glenn Maxwell knocked with his first swing of the bat.

India went into the final as clear favourites but the dry pitch ended up suiting Australia.

“Pat Cummins was phenomenal, I think he’s been phenomenal all tournament with his decision making,” bowler Mitchell Starc said.

“At times he’s had to step up with the ball and when it’s been a bit flat, he’s been phenomenal.

“That’s just capped off an unbelievable eight weeks for his team. I have no words.

“Between Pat and all our coaches, it’s been an incredible winter.

“I don’t think you can write a script to top the winter we’ve had.

“To win a World Cup in India, it’s been a fantastic eight weeks.

“It’s been tough but gee whizz it has been successful and enjoyable.”