Travis Head delivers World Cup final masterclass in POTM display
The pressure was on Head when Australia slipped to 47/3 in search of a target of 241 to beat India at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
But Head produced one of the best knocks of his career, scoring 137 from 120 balls to guide his team to the brink of victory.
Head didn’t play a part in the first half of Australia’s campaign, remaining back home to help his recovery from a broken hand before joining the squad midway through the tournament.
And he more than justified Australia’s faith in him – becoming Player of the Match in the Cricket World Cup final in the same year that he was also named Player of the Match in the World Test Championship Final.
The 29-year-old’s outstanding century in the final was ably supported by the resolute Marnus Labuschagne, who held firm at the other end with 58* from 110 balls.
Yet it was Head who defied an Indian bowling attack who threw everything at him on a difficult surface.
The opener was caught in the boundary with just one run required, departing to standing ovation from his team-mates.
And it wasn’t just with the bat that Head excelled, with his wonderful catch to remove Rohit Sharma turning the tide in the first innings.
Despite not scoring the winning runs, it was never in doubt that Head would be named Player of the Match after a standout display that earned Australia’s men their sixth Cricket World Cup title.
“What an amazing day, I’m just thrilled to be a part of it,” Head said after his match-winning display.
“It’s a lot better than sitting on the couch at home, I’m very lucky that everything went well and I was able to get back here.
“I was a little bit nervous, but Marnus played exceptional and it was just an amazing partnership.
“It’s nice to be a part of it, nice to play a role, and it’s going to be an amazing couple of days now.
“To be able to do that on the big stage, in front of a big crowd, it’s pretty special and something that I’ll be happy to look back on later in my life. It’s nice to be here and nice to contribute.”