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Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed gets hero’s welcome in Karachi

Men, women and children packed Karachi airport as Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed returned from England, where the team thrashed arch-rivals India in the ICC Champions Trophy final to be crowned surprise winners

icc champions trophy 2017 Updated: Jun 20, 2017 09:48 IST
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP, Karachi
Champions Trophy 2017,ICC Champions Trophy,Sarfraz Ahmed
Pakistan's Sarfraz Ahmed gestures to cricket fans as he celebrates winning the ICC Champions Trophy upon his arrival at his house in Karachi on Tuesday.(REUTERS)

Hundreds of fans gave Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed a hero’s welcome as he arrived home carrying the ICC Champions Trophy early on Tuesday.

Men, women and children packed Karachi airport as Sarfraz returned from England, where Pakistan thrashed arch-rivals India to be crowned surprise winners.

Sarfraz held up the trophy to loud cheers and chants of “Long live Sarfraz!” as a police band played patriotic songs nearby.

READ | Virat Kohli named in Team of Champions Trophy, Pakistan’s Sarfraz Ahmed skipper

“(We won) thanks to Allah and the prayers of the whole nation,” Ahmed said in brief comments as he jostled his way through the crowd of well-wishers.

Pakistan’s victory by 180 runs on Sunday has sparked widespread celebrations in the country, where cricket is the number one sport.

READ | Pakistan’s ICC Champions Trophy triumph a repeat of 1992 World Cup glory

Sarfraz was showered with bouquets and given a traditional skull cap and an ‘ajrak’ shawl, which is usually presented as a mark of honour.

Senior local officials also turned up to greet the captain before he was whisked away under escort by police commandos along with team-mate Rumman Raees.

Sarfraz’s residential block in central Karachi was adorned with colourful lights and Pakistan flags, while fans climbed on rooftops and balconies to watch him return home.

First Published: Jun 20, 2017 09:45 IST