|World Test Championship final: India v New Zealand|
|Venue: Ageas Bowl Date: 18-22 June (reserve day on 23 June) Time: 2:00 PM (GMT+4)|
India vs New Zealand World Test Championship final on friday June 18
It will be a contest between two contrasting captains, both hungry to win a world event. The fire of Virat Kohli (India) up against the calmness of Kane Williamson (New Zealand) – also two of the world’s best batters. Both players have so far been on opposite sides of two knockout games at world events: the ICC Under-19 World Cup in 2008 (Kohli won) and the 2019 World Cup semi-final (Williamson). They will now square off in the grand finale of a world event for the first time.
But who will win?
In one corner, India – cricket’s true superpower, backed by a nation of 1.4 billion people and led by an icon of the game and global superstar Virat Kohli.
In the other, New Zealand – a country with a population of fewer than five million, beaten finalists in the past two World Cup finals, but with a team who have just dispatched England with ease.
|How the batting compares|
|India||Test average||Test average||New Zealand|
|Shubman Gill||34.36||41.84||Tom Latham|
|Rohit Sharma||46.69||76.50||Devon Conway|
|Cheteshwar Pujara||46.59||53.60||Kane Williamson|
|Virat Kohli||52.37||45.76||Ross Taylor|
|Ajinkya Rahane||41.28||43.40||Henry Nicholls|
|Rishabh Pant||45.26||37.89||BJ Watling|
In the last five meetings between both teams in ICC tournaments, New Zealand holds the edge with four wins out of five. India’s only victory was way back in the 2003 World Cup under Sourav Ganguly.
Since then India have lost every match to the Black Caps at ICC events. Here’s a rewind of those contests:
1999 ICC World Cup, Super 6, Nottingham:
2000 ICC Knockout Trophy, Nairobi:
2003 ICC World Cup, Super 6, Centurion:
Zaheer Khan’s superb spell of 4/42 blew away the Kiwis as they were bowled out of just 146. New Zealand’s top-order batting collapsed and a score of 146 was never going to be enough to trouble the Indian batting line-up. However, Shane Bond had India reeling at 21/3 but Rahul Dravid and Mohammad Kaif played sensible, solid cricket to take their side home.
2007 World T20 league, Johannesburg:
2016 T20 World Cup Super-10, Nagpur:
In a low-scoring encounter, India was skittled out for a paltry 79 chasing a target of 127 in 20 overs. On a pitch that was conducive to spin bowling the trio of R Ashwin, Suresh Raina and Harbhajan Singh spun a web around the Kiwis and restricted to a score of 126/7. None of the batsmen except Corey Anderson and Luke Ronchi got going. However, New Zealand hit back with their own trio of Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, and Nathan McCullum as the Black Caps won by 47 runs.
2019 ICC World Cup Semi-final, Manchester:
This was an Indian team that played under the leadership of Virat Kohli-led team. New Zealand batted first in the contest which was spread over two days due to inclement weather. Kane Williamson (67 off 95), Ross Taylor (74 off 90) were the architects in chief as the Kiwis ended with 239 on the board. Bhuvneshwar Kumar was the pick of the bowlers with 3/43. However, India’s batting fell apart in the run-chase as the Kiwi seamers wrecked havoc. Ravindra Jadeja’s 77 off 59 balls took India close to the target but they were ultimately short by 18 runs.
India lose Test series 0-2
In the two-match Test series in New Zealand in 2020 which was a part of the WTC cycle, India lost the first Test in Wellington by 10 wickets. Kohli’s India also India lost the second Test in Christchurch by seven wickets. The batting performance was barely up to the mark as 242 was the highest total put by the Indian lineup across two matches.