London: Former Australia batsman Michael Hussey feels underdogs Pakistan peaked at the right time and played their best cricket in the final against India to lift the ICC Champions Trophy.
"Pakistan was the underdog coming into the final but there was a feeling of destiny about it. Tournament play is all about peaking at the right time and after a poor start to the tournament, most pundits gave it no chance of winning," Hussey wrote in his column for ICC.
"However, by the time it lifted the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 at The Oval, it was undoubtedly playing its best cricket. Huge congratulations need to go to Mickey Arthur, Sarfraz Ahmed, the support staff and players for showing great character and turning the team's fortunes around."
Hussey also lavished praise on India's batting and bowling.
"India has a batting order that every team would be envious of, with Shikhar Dhawan's love affair of batting in England continuing, but it also has a somewhat unheralded bowling attack that has been very effective," he wrote.
"Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah form a great combination who complement each other very well, and the spin options of R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja keep the pressure on in the middle overs. There is a nice blend of youth and experience in this Indian team."
With top teams such as South Africa and Australia knocked out early, Hussey said it showed the level of competition among the major sides.
"...top teams in the world are very close and anyone can be beaten on a given day. This was shown with Pakistan, which came into the tournament ranked eighth and went all the way through to win the final," he said.
"Its bowling attack was brilliant with Mohammad Amir and Junaid Khan contributing well throughout the tournament but the emergence of a couple of newer players in Hasan Ali and Fakhar Zaman, who scored a brilliant century in the final, is exciting for the future for Pakistan."