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India World Champion

MUMBAI, April 2 (Xinhua) — India beat Sri Lanka Saturday to win the World Cup title after a long hiatus of 28 years. The legendary names Sachin Tendulkar and Mahendra Singh Dhoni have been written in the history books as the immortals of cricket.

The final World Cup match at the Wankhede Stadium here saw a sea of over a billion cricket worshippers hailing the ultimate day of cricketing immortality for the team that deserved it the most.

Before Sri Lanka started the trend, the first five World Cup finals all went in favor of the teams batting first.

In the first tournament in 1975, West Indies beat Australia by 17 runs. Chasing the Windies’ target of 292 in 60 overs, Australians were bowled out for 274 runs. In 1979, the Windies won yet again batting first against England. The hosts chasing 287 runs to win, crashed to a 92-run loss.

In 1983, India turned the tables on the Windies in a low- scoring affair.

Chasing India’s 183 runs, the two-time and defending champions were bundled out for 140 runs to give India a historic win at the Lord’s.

In 1987, England went down by the tightest of margins, losing to Australia by seven runs at the Eden Gardens to give the eventual four-time champions their first World Cup title.

Chasing Australia’s score of 253 runs for the loss of five wickets, England finished at 246 runs for the loss of eight.

England were left again on the losing side of a chasing final in the very next edition when they went down by 22 runs to Pakistan in the 1992 final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

It was then that Sri Lanka bucked the trend winning their first title by chasing against Australia, before the Aussies did the same against Pakistan in 1999.

With Australia in dominating form in the last decade, there was no chance that India and Sri Lanka when they took them in the finals of the 2003 and 2007 editions.

Australia posted a huge 359 runs for the loss of two wickets against India before winning the game by 125 runs. In 2007, Australia won yet again batting first as Sri Lanka fell short of the target of 281 runs by 53 runs according to the Duckworth or Lewis method.

In a way, apart from Sri Lanka, India beat history to lift this World Cup.

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