Dubai: The raw emotions caught on the face of the entire Australian team soon after the triumph was a giveaway about their pent up feelings after the final at the Dubai International Stadium. Don’t write us off - seemed to be the message as the entire unit leapt into each other while Man of the Tournament David Warner, who had undergone a severe humiliation in the last few months - was completely ballistic.
Aaron Finch, the Australian captain who led the side with calm and poise to tide over an indifferent start, said: “This is huge, to be the first Australia team to do it. So proud of how the guys went about the campaign.
Asked by the broadcasters before the presentation if their win against Bangladesh was the turning point, Finch said: ‘‘It certainly was, our backs were against the wall. We had to fight and certainly did that, had some great team and individual performances,’’ before lavishing praise on his partner-in-crime Warner. ‘‘Can’t believe people wrote him off a couple of weeks ago, it was almost like poking the bear.’’
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Justin Langer, the coach of the baggy greens who himself was under a bit of pressure due to an indifferent showing by the Australians throughout the year, put things in perspective. ‘‘It’s a great team effort. I know after a big win like this the coach or the players say that it’s hard to process but we knew there are so many close relationships here. It was like one great reunion,’’ he said.
“It’s huge”, said Australian wicketkeeper Matthew Wade, without whose superman-like effort in the semi-final against Pakistan, they wouldn’t have come so far. “It felt like a lot of people wrote us off but we spoke about being the first team to do this for Australia and it feels really special.”
“We love each other, I’m so proud of this team,” added allrounder Marcus Stoinis. “You won’t find bigger supporters of Mitch Marsh than us and his family,” said the visibly emotional Stoinis.
Mitchell Starc, the senior statesman among pace bowlers for Australia, showered praise on leg spinner Adam Zampa, who had been the highest wicket-taker for the champions. “He’s been fantastic, our best bowler for the last couple of years. It’s made it really easy for us quickies to work around him, we’re pretty confident in what we do and just run off the back of Zamps. It makes the bowling group, we know our roles and can do our job a lot clearer,” said the left-arm seamer.
Zampa himself said: ‘‘I wanted to use my strength on a wicket which kept low. A lot of credit goes to the backroom boys on how they kept us going.’’
Glenn Maxwell, who finished off the game on Sunday evening, said: ‘‘He has been a superstar. He has fitted in so well in this team in the last three years.’’