Babar confesses Pakistan missed Afridi
Debutant pace bowler Naseem Shah stood out for Pakistan with figures of 2-27 but a foot injury in the last few overs had him limping as India took control with the right-left batting pair of Pandya and Jadeja. Pakistan skipper, the losing captain, during post-match did admit his side missed the services of pacer Shaheen Afridi, who was forced out of the six-nation tournament through injury.
Defending 147, Pakistan struck early through Naseem who took the wicket of KL Rahul for nought as the opener dragged an express delivery on to his stumps.
The 19-year old Naseem nearly got Kohli out two balls later only for Fakhar Zaman to drop a catch at second slip.
"Naseem bowled well at the start, He took crucial wickets and bowled well in the death as well," Azam said of his young bowler, who removed Suryakumar Yadav for 18 as well.
Pakistan skipper Babar praised the bowler for his valiant effort despite suffering from cramps.
"We missed Shaheen [Shah Afridi] but he never let us feel his absence. It was his confidence that made him bowl like that."
Babar and Co were still in with a chance halfway in the final over, with India still requiring six off three balls, but a Pandya six ensured the thriller ended in the defending champions' favour.