Steely resolve, unwavering focus made India No. 1 in Test cricket: Ravi Shastri
India decimated New Zealand (3-0), England (4-0) in the 2016-17 season and defeated Australia (2-1) the same season. In 2017, Kohli’s men went to Sri Lanka handed them a 3-0 bashing on their own turf. As a result of such one-sided results, the Indian team continued to add points to their tally and remained top of the ICC Test Rankings in 2017 as well as 2018.
In the 2018-19 season, India defeated West Indies at home and also became the first side from the sub-continent to beat the Australians in a Test series in their own home. Kohli & Co. lifted the Border-Gavaskar Trophy to scale the heights that no one had in Indian cricket before. As a result, the year 2019 also ended with India at the Number Uno position.
2020 had its disruptions due to Covid-19 while India’s tour of New Zealand also didn’t go as planned. With the entire cricketing world disrupted due to the virus and several bilateral series being cancelled, India remained the No. 1 side but as soon as cricket resumed, Kohli’s men looked at their best again.
India arrived in Australia with the hopes of retaining the Border-Gavaskar Trophy and did just that. Though Kohli had to return home for the birth of his baby, Ajinkya Rahane led the team phenomenally as several rookies rose to the occasion to grab the opportunity with both hands. The 2-1 victory over Australia Down Under and a dominant home series triumph over England (3-1) ensured India succeeded in winning the ICC Test Mace for the year 2020 as well.
- Team India returned as the No. 1 side in Test cricket after the 2017-18 season’s results were eliminated
- It was the 5th consecutive occasion for the Indian team to emerge as the No. 1 side after the end of a season
- Australia hold the record of winning most consecutive ICC Test Maces
India vs New Zealand WTC Final: Squads, Fixtures, Venue, Broadcasters & All you need to know
From 18th June 2021, the attention of the entire cricketing world will shift to Southampton, where Virat Kohli’s India will take on Kane Williamson’s New Zealand in the summit clash of the World Test Championship (WTC). Both these formidable outfits will enter the WTC final on the back of a stupendous run in Test cricket in recent times.
Both India and New Zealand will be led by two men who are the legends of the modern era. While Williamson is the backbone of the New Zealand batting lineup and has scored 7115 runs in Test cricket at an average of 54.31, including 24 centuries, Virat Kohli has plundered 7490 runs in the white flannels at an average of 52.38, including 27 centuries.
So, a tantalizing contest awaits the cricketing world in 5 weeks’ time. Will Williamson’s coolness prevail over Virat Kohli’s fiery brand of cricket? Or will Kohli’s India emerge on top?
World Test Championship Final Squads
India Squad for WTC Final & England Test Series
India has named a massive 24-member squad for the WTC final, including 4 ‘standby’ players. While Virat Kohli will lead the Indian side, Ajinkya Rahane will be his deputy. The likes of Wridhimann Saha and KL Rahul have been added to the Indian Test squad subject to medical clearance.
Virat Kohli (Captain), Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), R. Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed. Shami, Mohammed. Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Umesh Yadav, KL Rahul (subject to fitness clearance), Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper; subject to fitness clearance).
Standby players: Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan, Arzan Nagwaswalla
New Zealand Squad for WTC Final
New Zealand has named a 20-member squad for the WTC final. The New Zealand outfit will be led by Kane Williamson. Also, BJ Watling will don the wicket-keeping duties for the Kiwi side.
Kane Williamson (C), Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Doug Bracewell, Devon Conway, Colin de Grandhomme, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryll Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Rachin Ravindra, Mitchell Santner, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling (WK), Will Young.
Schedule and Venue for WTC Final
The World Test Championship (WTC) final between India and New Zealand will be held from 18th June to 22nd June 2021. The WTC final will be played at Southampton.
Broadcast Details for WCT Final
Match Timings: 3:30 PM (IST)
TV: Star Sports Network
Live Streaming: Hotstar
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