It’s been almost fifty plus days for the Indian Cricket Fans to witness real cricket . After the postponement of IPL , every cricket fan’s mind must have traveled to the date JUNE 18 for the World Test Championship final. Despite the World Test Championship being initially proposed in 2009, the tournament went through two failed attempts in 2013 and 2017, before it was officially launched in July 2019 with Ashes in England. ICC initiated the Test Championship format to make the Test Cricket alive for this current T20 era generation and it was a great initiative for the real format of Cricket. If you ask any international Cricketer who succeeded in his life with his profession , about his favorite format mostly the answer would be “TEST CRICKET” since its the inception format of the cricket . In Test Cricket , there is no specific target to chase in a single day, we don’t need a six in each over to keep the strike rate .But , the patience in each session with the talent and skills of Individual matters the most .Finally the long run of this longer format will come to end with the result on June 22. Lets Preview the final match in this article
Road to ICC World Test Championship:
Yes the big stage is set for both India and NewZealand in Southampton .Team India played six bilateral series with three away and home games . In the early stage of the tournament Team India were dominating the Test Championship with continuous Test victories starting with the West Indies Away game and ending their victory Campaign against England in the home game . But the best part of this journey was winning the Border Gavaskar Trophy in Australia after the dark day of 36 All out in Adelaide from that a dominant Test series victory with bench strength was unbelievable and later the series was named as one of the best Test Cricket series in World Cricket by ICC.After this series victory, India almost grabbed the chance of Australia’s final place in Test Championship.
Team India against NewZealand :
Even if we witness the dominance towards the away Teams , In this road of final the only series which India lost was against New Zealand in a away test Series for this World Test Championship .A Test series victory against New Zealand in their country is still a nightmare for Indian Team.Previously , a draw happened between these two Teams under MSDhoni Captainship followed by sensational batting by Gautham Gambir in NewZealand which was still the best Test game against NewZealand.Though , Indian Team had a strong power in all format , their failure against green pitches and the struggle continues till date.Team India will face the fiery four fast bowling line up in this final which will be big threat and challenge in Ageas Bowl. Will Indian Team set a full stop for the away series loss against NewZealand with this world Test Championship final 2021 . Yes, like everyone , I am also excited and waiting for the result day .
Team India and ICC Events Connect :
Team India is the only Cricket Team in world Cricket , to be able to seal the place in final on every ICC event which includes every format [60 Over (1983) ,20 Over(2007), 50 Over (2011) ] and currently Test Championship, I will try to compare this achievement Neil Armstrong placing his foot mark in the moon and the first person in the planet to do the wonder .Likewise , Team India made this achievement in World Cricket .It was 2013, last time Team India won the ICC championship Trophy in England . After that , Indian Team collapsed at the knockout stage in every ICC event in both ODI and T20. Will Team India put a full stop against this ICC knockout Criticism?.
Team India and England Venue:
Indian Cricket Team had cherishable memories in England Venue as follows. Firstly , the first World Cup victory against WestIndies in 1983 happened in English Soil. Though it’s the first World Cup victory,personally I cannot connect myself to that moment since I was not born on those days.If we debate with any of our previous generation Cricket fans with 2011 World Cup victory they will proudly say 1983 was their best moment till date .
Then , I will add Natwest Series victory against England in this list . It’s the iconic moment of Indian Cricket Team at Lords and the Tshirt Celebration of Dada Ganguly will be one of the best moments in the history of Indian Cricket Team . It happened after the bookies and Cricket betting cases against Indian Team . Saurav Ganguly raised Team India from all those hostile memories and made Indian Cricket and Indian Cricket fans alive.
Then, ICC Champions Trophy was the only Trophy which was left empty in the Indian Team Cabinet , that was fulfilled by Indian Team in England . Likewise , there are many positive connections in England Venue for Team India .Will the list include the Test Championship victory? .Let’s wait for the result day .
Final Match Preview and Playing XI:
Finally , the match Preview for the final Match . Recently , the pitch curator stated that Simon Lee revealed that he has prepared the wicket to have pace, carry and bounce. With the weather forecast offering a faint chance of rain during the ICC WTC Final, the conditions will suit seamers.
Both Teams announced their 15 Member squads for the final .Team Management had a strong belief in Gill as a opener over experienced Rahul and Mayank which showed the trust on the youngster ,His role will be crucial at this big stage .Mostly New Zealand have the luxury of playing with four seamers with their line up. But the healthy debate for the Indian team was will they switch to four seamers and one spinner in their line up. The batting order and wicket keeping options look settled on seeing the 15- Member Squad. It’s a tough call for the Captain to choose between Jadeja/Ashwin with the fourth Seamer.
In this long journey of Test Championship, Indian Seamers and Ashwin played a big role as bowlers in the Team . Ishant Sharma and Shami have the most wickets (36) in this WTC followed by Bumrah(34) and Umesh(29).There are some few buzzes and reports on Siraj place in the playing XI . Though Siraj proved himself with his few matches , it’s really difficult to play Siraj by dropping any of these pace bowlers. It’s going to be Jadeja vs Siraj competition in the playing XI. If the team needs to strengthen their batting depth and in need of spinners in the DAY 3/DAY 4 it’s an open choice Jadeja will be the player . But in Test Cricket the conditions are king , that too in England Weather and conditions decides the match fate.According to sources ,It’s likely to rain on Ageas bowl in next five days . So the ICC decided to have a reserved day for this Final match on June 23.
Match Venue and Timing :
Venue : Ageas Bowl , Southampton
Time : 3.00 PM IST
BrodCast Network : Star Sports , Disney Hotstar
Players to Watch out :
Two players from India will decide the result in favour for Indian Cricket Team , One from bowlers and other from Batsmans
Chateshwar Pujara, he will be the player to watch out in this final , he is the tailormade person for this kind of Test Cricket . If he stays in crese for two sessions then Team India have a high chance to lift the ICC Test Maze for the first time .
Ishant Sharma, he has huge responsibilities in this final match as a fast bowler who played 100+ Test matches for Indian Cricket Team .His presence and pace will be the key factor for Indian Team victory. He is a specialist bowler against left hander since Newzealand has strong left hand players like Tom Latham, Devon Convey at the top , his service will be primary for Indian Team .
Playing XI Prediction
- Rohit Sharma
- Shubman Gill
- Chateshwar Pujara
- Virat Kohli
- Ajinkya Rahane
- Rishabh Pant
- Ravindra Jadeja
- Ravinchandran Ashwin
- Mohammed Shami
- Jasprit Bumrah
- Ishant Sharma
New Zealand Playing XI:
- Tom Latham
- Devon Conway
- Kane Williamson
- Ross Taylor
- BJ Watling
- Colin De Grandhomme
- Ajaz Patel
- Kyle Jamieson / Matt Hendry
- Tim Southee
- Neil Wagner
- Trent Boult