CricViz recaps Mohammad Amir’s three big wickets in the ICC Champions Trophy final.
Before the final Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli had scored 80% of India’s runs in the 2017 Champions Trophy. In one devastating spell Pakistan’s opening bowler Mohammad Amir dismissed each of India’s three key batsmen, taking Pakistan to the brink of victory.
This was a classic left-armer’s dismissal. From over the wicket Amir bowled two deliveries across Rohit towards first slip. The first one swung in slightly, by 0.49° and the second one away by 0.17° but both deliveries pitched outside the line of middle stump and were carried wider by the angle. The third delivery swung sharply back in by 2.83°, pitching in line with leg stump, going further across Rohit with the angle but straightening by 0.30° after pitching. The big swing and the deviation countered the angle and Rohit played down the wrong line and was well beaten on the inside edge and hit right in front.
The ball before dismissing Kohli, Amir had him dropped at first slip off a beautiful ball—again from over the wicket and angled across the right hander—which bounced more than Kohli expected and took the shoulder of the bat. The dropped-catch delivery pitched 7.20 metres from Kohli’s stumps and bounced 87cm at the cross-section of the stumps; by way of comparison Amir’s first delivery to Kohli pitched 7.75 metres from Kohli’s stumps—shorter than the drop-ball—but bounced 71cm at the cross-section of the stumps—less than the drop-ball. The drop ball also deviated 0.24° away.
The wicket itself was perhaps a consequence of the preceding delivery. This ball was 1.20 metres fuller than the ball before but it pitched on an almost identical middle stump line. Kohli, perhaps rattled by the drop and keen to assert himself on the match, looked to hit the ball through mid-wicket—a favoured shot of his against pace bowling. Amir’s angle however, meant that the trajectory of the ball was going across Kohli—combine that with a hint of deviation away 0.42°—and there was enough to find the edge of Kohli’s bat.
Dhawan was dismissed in the ninth over of the match, by which point the lacquer had worn off the ball and the fraction of swing Amir was finding had diminished from 0.05° in his first two overs to 0.03° in his following two. With almost no swing available, Amir bowled a cross-seam delivery to Dhawan which appeared to find a bit of extra bounce—82cm from a pitching length of 7.16 metres from the stumps compared to 71cm from 7.75 metres earlier in his spell and Dhawan sparred hesitantly at the ball outside off stump and was caught behind.
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