Sarfraz proud as Pakistan reach final

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They've won 11 of their last 12 matches at this level, a far cry from their woeful first-round exit at the 2015 World Cup, and Eoin Morgan's men were the only side to exit the group stage of the Champions Trophy with a flawless played three, won three, record.

Morgan was part of the England side who lost the final of this tournament to India four years ago, when they snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

Chasing a below-par 212, Pakistan on Wednesday rode on a brilliant 118-run opening stand between Azhar Ali (76) and Fakhar Zaman (57) before Babar Azam (38 not out) and Ali helped the team with a 55-run second-wicket partnership to set their date with the victor of the second semi-final between India and Bangladesh, on Sunday.

England rode on useful contributions from top-order batsmen - Joe Root (46), Jonny Bairstow (43) and captain Eoin Morgan (33) - but they kept losing wicket at regular intervals due to sustained pressure created by Pakistan bowlers.

Talking about India rematch in the final, he said, "Both teams (India and Bangladesh) are playing well, so we will play whoever gets through". "Even in the World Cup 2015, they were really good". Certainly, that hasn't gone to our heads at all.

"We adapted to conditions, we knew if we restrict them we could easily chase it down", he added.

Hasan Ali, who was adjudged the Man of the Match, was the pick of the Pakistan bowlers as he picked up three wickets giving away just 35 runs in his quota of 10 overs.

"I think, going into today's game knowing that we were going to play on a used wicket potentially brought Pakistan's game closer to their home (conditions)".

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He adds it means the team are out of a tournament they could have won: "They had all bases covered: powerful batting and a bowling attack full of variety and wicket-takers - a team of match-winners". We did prepare like we were going to play on a used wicket.

Former Pakistan skipper Imran Khan, under whose leadership the nation had won 50-over World Cup in 1992, tweeted: "Now the whole nation awaits our team making amends in the final against India - if they defeat Bangladesh". Amir was sidelined with a back spasm, having been a key figure in Pakistan's win against Sri Lanka in Cardiff on Monday.

"I think Ashwin was brilliant in the last game".

"But certainly today it was - coming from Edgbaston (against Australia), it was obviously a big jump in pace and bounce and too much of an ask for us to adjust to really".

"We played very well". They outplayed us today on this wicket.

Pakistan surprised many by bouncing back brilliantly from their heavy loss against India in the tournament opener to beat South Africa and Sri Lanaka enroute to the last four.

"Finishing third or fourth, I think that's about right where we sit in world cricket at the moment".

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