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World Test Championship Final Review 2021, Prediction Results, WTC XI, and Stats: It Is New Zealand’s Time

World Test Championship Final Review – Welcome to my 150th article! New Zealand lift the World Test Championship trophy via Jamieson, Conway, Williamson-Taylor show.

After two long, pandemic induced years, the inaugural World Test Championship has finally come to an end. The Kiwis are the world champions, and they thoroughly deserved it.

Traditional English rain, Dinesh Karthik’s meteorology/commentating debut, gritty Test match batting, tall and lanky fast bowlers, de Grandhomme’s hair, a reserve sixth day coming into play, BJ Watling’s retirement, a bit of Ashwin—we saw it all.

The run-rate might have been slow, but the tussle between the top two Test teams was intense. Bowlers bowling consistently in the channel & fighting it out. Great exhibition of Test cricket, ebb and flow throughout.

Here is the World Test Championship Final Review—Match summary, review of India and New Zealand’s key performers, a THANK YOU to our audience, WTC Prediction Results, 3-match Final Debate, Stats, and WTC XI!

Also Read: World Test Championship Final Preview 2021: Will Rain Spoil Watling’s Retirement?

WTC Final Summary

  • Toss: New Zealand won the toss and elected to field first
  • Result: NZ Won by 8 wickets
  • Player of the Match: Kyle Jamieson
  1. India 217/10 (92.1 overs)
    • Ajinkya Rahane 49 (117), Virat Kohli 44 (132)
    • Kyle Jamieson 5/22, Neil Wagner 2/40, Trent Boult 2/47
  2. New Zealand 249/10 (99.2 overs)
    • Devon Conway 54 (153), Kane Williamson 49 (177)
    • Mohammad Shami 4/76, Ishant Sharma 3/48
  3. India 170/10 (73 overs)
    • Rishabh Pant 41 (88), Rohit Sharma 30 (81)
    • Tim Southee 4/48, Trent Boult 3/39
  4. New Zealand 140/2 (45.5 overs)
    • Kane Williamson 52* (89), Ross Taylor 47* (100)
    • Ravichandran Ashwin 2/17
Embed from Getty Images


An Ode To The Bowlers

The Indian Bowlers

Before we dive into “What Went Wrong For India” or “How did NZ Win,” let us discuss what made this Test match riveting. Amidst the rain when nobody expected a result, the fast bowlers from both team delivered.

Commentators had analyzed why Shami had been ‘unlucky’ in the last tour of England. Bowled beautifully but without any returns. Not anymore. In one of his later spells in the first innings, he changed the game. The BJ Watling bowled was the ball of the match. Ishant Sharma was at his consistent best. The way he bowled maidens after maidens to Devon Conway, which prompted an uncharacteristic loose shot, was brilliant. Even though Bumrah was not at his best, his final day spell almost brought India back if not for the Pujara drop.

R Ashwin will definitely go down as an all-time best. He has rediscovered himself of late, ending up as the highest wicket-taker in the WTC. Performed across all conditions, saved a Test match in Sydney, scored a century anplug 9 wickets in his home, Chennai, and kept India in the game in the 4th innings (10-5-17-2).

New Zealand – An All-Time Attack

What are the best all-time attacks? Think West Indies’ 1980s generation, Australia’s 2000s attack, Steyn-Morkel-Rabada-Philander for that one series, Anderson-Broad, and India now getting there.

Southee-Boult-Wagner-Jamieson surely rank among the top. Southee’s ball to dismiss Rohit Sharma was an epic change-up in his 4-fer. Boult chipped in with Pujara, Jadeja, Rahane, & Pant’s wickets. Wagner’s intensity was breathtaking and his setup of Rahane & Jadeja was magnificent. Jamieson took the wickets but his economy rate is what suffocated India. An economy of 1.40 after 22 overs in the 1st innings and 1.25 after 25 overs in the second took the steam out of the Indian batting. Add Colin de Grandhomme in these conditions, there was no respite on offer.


1. Rohit Sharma As an Overseas Test Opener: Great or Just OK?

Rohit Sharma was criticized for his Southee leave in the 2nd innings that had him LBW, just a few overs before close on the penultimate day.

Sharma has come into his own as a Test opener in the last couple of years. With 2679 runs in 39 Tests with 7-100s, 12-50s, and a best of 212, this looks like pretty decent career after a bumpy start.

The criticism comes from the lack of hundreds in recent overseas Tests.

  • Overall Record (last year): 44.83 average, 161 Vs England
  • Overseas Innings (last year): 26 (77) & 52 (98), 44 (74) & 7 (21), and 34 (68) & 30 (81) in the WTC Final

I think he did his job pretty well. Think Aakash Chopra 2003 or Joe Denly 2019 rather than Sehwag-esque performance. Rohit tired the bowlers and took the shine off the new ball but has not been hitting those daddy hundreds fans at home have become accustomed to. Just the batters after him did not follow suit and NZ have four world-class bowlers to rotate through.

Shubman Gill has always looked calm, composed, and classy on the crease in his little career, but only 3 fifties in 15 innings with the best of 91 shows that Indian openers have a conversion problem.

2. The Pujara-Rahane Conundrum


What can India do about Pujara & Rahane? Pujara’s 8 (54) & 15 (80) in the final does not inspire much confidence. His last three centuries came on that 2018 Australia tour. In this WTC cycle, he has hit nine fifties, played those against the pressure innings, taken some blows, and became a perfect foil to Pant in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, but nothing in between.


Rahane top-scored for India in the first-innings with a good-looking 49 (117) & briefly revived India with 15 (40). The concerning matter is his dismissals. First innings, Wagner had employed his troops into position. Short ball barrage was about to begin. First ball, Rahane top edges but safe. India 182-5. Next, another short ball, a lose pull, straight to the fielder. Rahane trapped. India collapse. 217-all out.

Second innings – same story. From 72-4 to 109. Good looking shots. Mini-revival after Pujara-Kohli were dismissed and Pant was dropped by Southee. Then out of the blue, he gets caught behind on the leg-side by Trent Boult. Just manages to get out in different ways.

Apart from his glorious overseas hundreds (& 96) or the twin tons in Delhi, there is not much to show. With KL Rahul, Hanuma Vihari, Abhimanyu Easwaran, and Mayank Agarwal in line, questions will be asked of the vice-captain.

Meanwhile Kohli’s hunt for his elusive 71st ton continues. His 44 was actually a good innings, but he did not convert either. When none of your middle order goes big, you are not going to win a Test, especially a final.

Also Read: India Vs Australia Series Review 2020-21: The Greatest Story of Them All? Better Than Ashes 2005?

3. The Curse Against The Lower Order

India 5/182 to 10/217 & 5/142 to 10/170. Ten wickets combined within 63 runs. New Zealand 5-162 to 10-249. 87 runs via Jamieson, Southee, & Boult.

That was the difference.

India has become a world-beater team with fast bowlers galore & growing depth over the past couple of years, but they have yet to counter the Sam Currans or Kyle Jamiesons.

New Zealand

1. Conway & Jamieson: Cricket Is A Piece of Cake

International cricket is a piece of cake for Devon Conway & Kyle Jamieson, isn’t it?


In the context of tough low-scoring match, a 70-run opening partnership between Latham and Conway was crucial. Conway’s 54 (153) was the highest score of New Zealand’s first innings. His mode of dismissal would concern him, but otherwise, pretty good start this.

  • 3 Tests, 379 runs, 63.16 average, 1-100, 2-50s, best of 200 (at Lord’s debut)
  • 3 ODIs, 225 runs, 75.00 average, 1-100, 1-50, best of 126
  • 14 T20Is, 473 runs, 59.12 average, 4-50s, best of 99*


What about Jamieson, the man of the hour? He was literally head and shoulders above everyone. Rohit, Kohli, Pant among his first-inning wickets, 30-run 7th wicket partnership with a 21 (16), and finally breaking the game with Pujara-Kohli wickets on the final morning.

  • 8 Tests, 46 wickets, 14.17 average, 6/48 BBI, 11/117 BBM
  • 256 runs, 42.66 average, 1-50, best of 51*

2. When The Time Comes, Kane Williamson & Ross Taylor Deliver

Kane Williamson & Ross Taylor are the two senior pros of the New Zealand batting lineup. Taylor has been there for 15 years, through unfortunate run-outs, tied finals, DRS decisions, captaincy controversies. In ICC knockouts, both have scored a few 30s and 40s, but never a match-changing innings.

Cometh the hour, cometh the men.

Williamson’s scratchy 49 (177) exuded his class. Despite not timing the ball and struggling, he stayed in the game and stitched the partnerships that got New Zealand to a respectable total.

In the fourth innings chase, the Kiwis were struggling at 44/2 in 20 overs. R Ashwin at the other end operating with his guile. Anything could have happened. The senior statesmen soaked in the pressure, with dot balls and maiden overs building.

After surviving the rough patch, they rotated the strike. A few overs later, the singles & doubles turned into boundaries. Couple of dropped catches signaled the end. Finally, the moment came with Ross Taylor hitting the winning runs. A fairytale script. What’s more? An iconic picture of brothers-in-arm to cap it off.

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3. Catches Win Matches Feat Tom Latham & Henry Nicholls

In the preview, we said to watch out for Tom Latham & Henry Nicholls, the New Zealand of the New Zealand team. Nobody ever talks about them, but they have been consistent performers in the last couple of years. With the bat, except for Latham’s 30, there was not much of note.

It is the fielding where these two came alive. Latham’s three catches and fielding efforts almost saved 35+ runs. Nicholls’ running backwards-diving catch off Pant was the moment of the match for me. India’s hopes ended with that catch.

And what about BJ Watling? Perfection behind the stumps in the first innings (no byes given) and kept wickets through injury in the second. The runs might not have come, but New Zealand’s greatest ever keeper retires on a high.

Little contributions, but in a close low-scoring affair, these moments makes the difference.

The Moment

Ecstasy. Team spirit. Absolute Joy.

Here are some of my takes from the final moment:

Tribute to the Legendary Commentating Crew

From a fan’s point of view, the commentating and analysis put this final on another level. The Sky Sports crew has always been amazing with Nasser Hussain & Michael Atherton, but Ian Bishop, Sunil Gavaskar, Kumar Sangakkara, Isa Guha, Simon Doull, and debutant Dinesh Karthik took it to another level.

Analyzing batting techniques, debating who won each session, and playful sledging at its very best. Mohammad Shami’s “chances created vs wickets” analysis was especially intriguing.

Here is a look from DK, the weatherman, on the first couple of days updating social media with regular Twitter & Instagram updates.

The Tweets

150th Article – Thank YOU

Before I move to the Prediction Results section of the article, a brief thank you to our viewers. We have reached our daddy hundred—the 150 is up!

I wanted to take a moment and thank all of you for the support. The Broken Cricket Dream blog began exactly 11 months ago, when the 1st Test between West Indies & England ended. What a chase that was.

The Broken Dreams

That game reminded me of the love of the sport, what I had been missing in the months right after the coronavirus hit. So the journey began, word by word, paragraph by paragraph, blog post by post. The goal of this platform was to share our own dreams, hopes, and love of the game with each other. We all have dreamt of being a cricketer at some point in time but life does not go to plan. That is okay though, things happen for the better. Here is a list of Broken Dreams by our fellow cricket lovers. For me, writing about cricket itself is a dream come true.

None of this would have been possible without our fans and followers. I thoroughly enjoy the discussions and little debates. Keep them coming. Love the interaction!

Anyway, 150 articles and 158,000 words later, Broken Cricket Dreams is still going strong and will continue to grow. We have now spread to several social media platforms. Feel free to check them out below. COMMENT BELOW of your thoughts on the WTC Final, your Broken Dreams, or any feedback!

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WTC Final Awards

Alright time for the #BCDAwards.

India New Zealand
MVPKyle Jamieson
22-12-31-5 & 21 (16)
24-10-30-2 & DNB
Most RunsRohit Sharma (34, 30), Ajinkya Rahane (49, 15) – 64Kane Williamson – 101 (49, 52*)
Most WicketsMohammad Shami (4,0), Ravichandran Ashwin (2,2) – 4Kyle Jamieson – 7
X FactorR AshwinJamieson, Conway, Williamson-Taylor, Southee, Latham/Nicholls (catches)
VerdictNZ won by 8 wickets
Broken Dream5th consecutive ICC knockout defeat
(2014 T20 WC Final, 2015 WC SF, 2016 T20 WC SF, 2017 CT Final, 2019 WC SF)
Watling retires, but on a high
World Test Championship Final Review – Awards

Prediction Results

Time for the results…

And the winners are Sourabh Sanyal and Xan with 4/10.🥇 CONGRATULATIONS!!!👏

Several interesting comments as well!

World Test Championship Final Review – The Predictions

MVPMost RunsMost WicketsX FactorVerdictBroken Dream

Rahane (IND)
Nicholls (NZ)
Rohit Sharma ✔ (IND)
Tom Latham (NZ)
Ishant Sharma (IND)
Tim Southee (NZ)
R Ashwin (IND) ✔
Ajaz Patel (NZ)
(Rain, rain go away)
Watling Retires ✔

Jamieson ✔
Rohit Sharma ✔
Devon Conway
Ishant Sharma
Tim Southee
R Jadeja
Ross Taylor ✔
DRAWWatling Retires ✔

Tom Latham
Ishant Sharma
Trent Boult
Conway ✔
DRAWWatling Retires ✔
Rohan Gulavani

Ishant Sharma
Tim Southee
Jamieson ✔
DRAW (Rain interruption)No clear winner for first ever WTC Final
Sourabh Sanyal

Rahane ✔
Henry Nicholls
Ishant Sharma
Jamieson ✔
Kane ✔
India if rain permits, Else DrawWatling Retires ✔
Mohd Shamir Ansari

Rohit Sharma
Ross Taylor
Rohit Sharma ✔ Mohammad Shami ✔ JadejaIndia WinsNZ reaches so far but cannot win final
Naman Agarwal

Virat Kohli
Kane Williamson ✔
Taylor ✔
Halsey NimRahane

Rain ✔ Pujara
Williamson ✔
Shami ✔
de Grandhomme
DRAWNowhere near enough play to get a result
World Test Championship Final Review – Prediction Results

The Comments

  • Andrew Williamson: “Just hoping the winner isn’t going to be Noah and his Ark. If there is enough play, I think New Zealand have the attack to trouble India, on what should be a track with a fair bit in it for the quicks. Kane or Taylor will have to go for NZ to succeed.”
  • Halsey Nim: “May need a sporting declaration somewhere along the way.”
  • Jonny: “Pujara vital for India (assume they bat first as NZ best chance is to put them in), Ashwin with important late runs, Boult to shine. Latham grinds out runs, Kane obs, BJ won’t want to fail. Indian wickets spread evenly. Kohli 100 2nd innings. NZ fall just short…”
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World Test Championship XI


The criteria is the player has to be the best at that position. Kane Williamson & Labuschagne both were excellent #3s, but I had to pick Labuschagne at the expense of the WTC winning captain. Labuschagne was the best batter in the WTC – most runs (1675), most hundreds (5), and fifties (9).

Jamieson & Labuschagne were the finds of this WTC cycle, so they walk in the XI.

Rohit Sharma just edges out Dean Elgar for the opening spot. I was tempted to go with Elgar since South Africa is a tougher place for openers, but with Karunaratne already at the top, I went with a left-right, defensive-aggressive combination. Both Root & Smith were excellent, but Smith’s iconic 774 runs in the Ashes puts him at the coveted #4 position.

Middle Order

The #5-7 spots were interesting. Ben Stokes’ Headingly show, relentless bowling spells, and 4 tons/6 fifties gives him the all-rounder spot. I initially had Rahane, the fifth highest scorer in the WTC and highest for India but instead, went with both Rishabh Pant and Mohammad Rizwan. Pant has mastered a couple of iconic chases, and Rizwan has been a revelation in the last year with his overseas rearguard innings. Quinton de Kock was also close behind in the keepers race.


Finally, the bowlers were the toughest to pick. My XI coincidentally had good batters as well. Mohammad Shami (40 wickets at 20.47), Josh Hazlewood (47 @ 20.54), Neil Wagner (35 @ 22.97), Jimmy Anderson (39 @ 19.51), Tim Southee (56 @ 20.82), Ishant Sharma (39 @ 17.75) had better averages, Anrich Nortje & Kemar Roach were brilliant throughout. I have not even talked about Trent Boult, Kagiso Rabada, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, and Shaheen Shah Afridi—all wonderful bowlers who had a decent couple of years without lighting the world on fire.

What an era to live in.

World Test Championship Combined XI

  1. Dimuth Karunaratne (C)
  2. Rohit Sharma
  3. Marnus Labuschagne
  4. Steve Smith
  5. Ben Stokes
  6. Rishabh Pant (WK)
  7. Mohammad Rizwan
  8. Ravichandran Ashwin
  9. Kyle Jamieson
  10. Pat Cummins
  11. Stuart Broad
  12. Tim Southee

For more World XIs, check out the articles below!

World Test Championship Statistics

Finally to cap it off, here are the statistics. Ashwin went up to #1, Rahane and Rohit Sharma remained at #5 & #6 respectively. Rahaen, Taylor, Watling, and Pant show up in the catches/dismissals section.

Most RunsMost WicketsMost CatchesMost Dismissals
Marnus Labuschagne – 1675Ravichandran Ashwin – 67Joe Root – 34Tim Paine – 65
Joe Root – 1660Pat Cummins – 70Steve Smith – 27Quinton de Kock – 50
Steve Smith – 1341Stuart Broad – 69Ben Stokes – 25Jos Buttler – 50
Ben Stokes – 1334Tim Southee – 56Ajinkya Rahane – 23BJ Watling – 48
Ajinkya Rahane – 1159Nathan Lyon – 56Ross Taylor – 21Rishabh Pant – 41
World Test Championship Final Review – Statistics

Best ScoresBest Bowling Figures
David Warner – 335* (Vs Pakistan – Adelaide)Lasith Embuldeniya – 7/137 (Vs England – Galle)
Zak Crawley – 267 (Vs Pakistan – Southampton)Ravichandran Ashwin – 7/145 (Vs South Africa – Visakhapatnam)
Virat Kohli – 254 (Vs South Africa – Pune)Jasprit Bumrah – 6/27 (Vs West Indies – Kingston)
Kane Williamson – 251 (Vs West Indies – Hamilton)Stuart Broad – 6/31 (Vs West Indies – Manchester)
Dimuth Karunaratne – 244 (Vs Bangladesh – Pallekelle)Axar Patel – 6/38 (Vs England – Ahmedabad)
World Test Championship Final Review – Best Performances

What did you all think of the World Test Championship Final Review? COMMENT Below with your thoughts!

Image Courtesy: ICC

World Test Championship Final Preview 2021: Will Rain Spoil Watling’s Retirement?

World Test Championship Final Preview.

After two long years of Test cricket & coronavirus interruption, the World Test Championship Final is finally here.

Rising Kiwis are slightly better prepared against world beaters India with a series against England. India has been in England for a few weeks due to quarantine but have only played an internal practice match.

Two of the best teams on show, finally some context for Test cricket, BJ Watling’s retirement, but will rain spoil it all?

Also Read: Alternative World Test Championship Points Table, 5 Things To Watch Out From the World Test Championship Final

Why Is The WTC Final Significant? A Brief History

The idea of the World Test Championship is not a new one.

World Test Championship was supposed to become a reality in 2009, 2013, & 2017, but each of those iterations were cancelled in favor of much more lucrative, ICC ODI Champions Trophy.

Imagine an Indian team comprising of Sehwag, Sachin, Dravid, VVS Laxman, MS Dhoni, Zaheer Khan competing against McCullum’s 2015 team or even better, the golden South African era of Jacques Kallis, Graeme Smith, AB De Villiers, & Dale Steyn earlier in the decade.

Anyway, World Test Championship finally came into existence in 2019 and began with the England-Australia Ashes series. 58 matches later, India and New Zealand are deservedly in the finals, carrying bench strengths of envy.

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Playing Conditions

When And Where?

Here is the date and the venue for the World Test Championship Final. It is linked to ESPNCricinfo’s scorecard and live updates.

ICC Changes implemented

The new ICC playing conditions are now in place. Two of the most prominent for this match will be:

  • The LBW zone for DRS umpire call decisions has been shifted a little bit. It would be interesting to see how many LBW decisions are overturned in this Test match.
  • A reserve sixth day will be utilized in case all possible overs are not recovered during the five days. Looks highly likely that the sixth day will come into play.

A couple of other little changes will also be in place.

Rain, Rain Go Away

There is a 100% rain forecast for the first four days of the Tests and then down to 80% and 70% for the couple of days after. Well, it is England….

Recent ICC Record

Here is a recent ODI & T20I World Cup history for India and New Zealand. Both teams have underwhelmed over the past decade given their talent. Since 2007, here is how the teams stack up.

India At ICC Events

  • Champions Trophy – Winner (2013), Runners-Up (2017)
  • ODI World Cup – Winner (2011), Semi-finals (2015), Semi-finals (2019)
  • T20I World Cup – Winner (2007), Runners-Up (2014), Semi-finals (2016)

New Zealand At ICC Events

  • Champions Trophy – Runners-Up (2009)
  • ODI World Cup – Semi-finals (2007), Semi-finals (2011), Runners-Up (2015), Runners-Up (2019)
  • T20I World Cup – Semi-finals (2007), Semi-finals (2016)

These records are meaningless because tomorrow is a new day and Test cricket is just another beast.

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Road To the Finals


India began by routing West Indies in the Caribbean, before securing points at home against lackluster South Africa & Bangladesh teams.

Then came the tours Down Under. While Kiwis routed India in swing bowling conditions, India delivered a masterclass of ages in Australia. After 36/9 in Adelaide, Rahane’s century resurrected India in Melbourne. Then, the Pujara-Pant-Vihari-Ashwin show ensured India survived the 3rd Test, and the youngsters Shardul-Sundar-Pant-Siraj broke the Gabba fort to retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

Finally, the England home series was a completely one-sided event even after Joe Root’s classic gave England a headstart at Chennai. Ashwin’s all-round magic at home & Axar Patel’s memorable debut ensured India ease past England.

India Matches Series Result
Vs WI*22-0
Vs SA33-0
Vs Ban22-0
Vs NZ*20-2
Vs Aus*42-1
Vs Eng43-1
World Test Championship Final Preview – India’s Road To Glory

*Signifies away series

New Zealand

New Zealand’s road to glory was much more formulaic.

The Kiwis started with away tours of Sri Lanka & Australia. While they put on a good show in New Zealand, winning one match, they were hammered in Australia (barring Neil Wagner’s intense series).

At home, it was same old. Swinging conditions. Boult, Southee, and debutant of the year, Kyle Jamieson, wrecked havoc against India and West Indies. Only Pakistan provided any semblance of resistance with Fawad Alam’s classic fourth innings ton going in vain with four overs left in the Test match.

New ZealandMatchesSeries Results
Vs SL*21-1
Vs Aus*30-3
Vs Ind22-0
Vs WI22-0
Vs Pak22-0
World Test Championship Final Preview – New Zealand’s Road To Glory

World Test Championship Final Preview – The Teams


  • Watch out for Ajinkya Rahane. He has a tendency to perform when it matters the most although his lack of consistency is frustrating. Rahane’s leadership & century in Melbourne was the catalyst for India in the memorable Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Since then, his form has gone hiding. England will bring back nice personal memories, and he is probably India’s best batter in swinging conditions. It is high time he shows up.
  • There were rumors that Mohammad Siraj would play in place of one of Mohammad Shami or Ishant Sharma, but that did not happen. India’s bowling has variety with Bumrah’s accuracy, Ishant’s seam, and Shami’s reverse swing. Looking forward to watch Ishant, who is in his 4th and most rewarding phase of his career. His 7-74 at Lord’s in the last tour was especially spectacular.
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New Zealand

  • Tributes have started flowing in for BJ Watling in his retirement match. This one is my favorite, especially his mom’s statement. Watling has been a symbol of this rising team’s resilience and stability. Always solid behind the stumps, he will go down as Kiwis’s greatest keeper, but what I will miss the most is his rearguard action. NZ’s middle order rarely collapsed, but when it did, Watling was at the rescue. The question is, does he have one fighting innings left in him?
  • This is a very understated team, but do you know who is the New Zealand in the New Zealand team? Tom Latham & Henry Nicholls. When the Conways, Williamsons, or Taylors make huge scores around them, you can guarantee that Latham-Nicholls will provide ample solid support. Expect one of them to rise to the occasion in the finals.

Watch Out For

  • Sharma-Shubman Vs Pace brigade of Boult-Southee-Jamieson: This might as well set the tone for this match. A Mumbai Indians mini-match between Boult & Rohit Sharma.
  • Latham-Conway-Nicholls Vs R Ashwin: Ashwin has been India’s most successful bowler in this WTC cycle and has performed across all conditions (with both bat and ball). Conway is in the form of his life and the Kiwis have 2 other left-hand batters in the Top 5. Expect to see a lot of Ashwin.
  • The slip catching. England’s dropped catches were on show in the last series and they have been one of the worst slip catching sides in the past two years. So I am glad Ind-NZ are playing this week. Both teams have legendary fast bowlers, so the ball will go to the slips more than usual. Rest assured, the catches will be taken. Rahane, Taylor, Rohit, Kohli, Latham should do the job.

Starting XIs


India has revealed its XI ahead of time. Shardul Thakur, Washington Sundar, Mohammad Siraj, Hanuma Vihari, Axar Patel, Mayank Agarwal all played crucial roles in the lead up to the WTC Finals, but unfortunately did not make the final XI. This is also the first time that Jadeja-Ashwin-Sharma-Shami-Bumrah will play together. What a mouth-watering lineup.

  1. Rohit Sharma, 2. Shubman Gill, 3. Cheteshwar Pujara, 4. Virat Kohli*, 5. Ajinkya Rahane, 6. Rishabh Pant (WK), 7. Ravindra Jadeja, 8. Ravichandran Ashwin, 9. Ishant Sharma, 10. Mohammad Shami, 11. Jasprit Bumrah

Squad: Hanuma Vihari, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Umesh Yadav, Mohammad Siraj

New Zealand

New Zealand’s lineup selects itself, but the crucial question is the #7-8 spot. Matt Henry, Neil Wagner, & Ajaz Patel performed admirably in the England series and Colin de Grandhomme has been out for a while, so will they go for a four-fast bowler strategy? Ajaz Patel should have done enough in the England series for a spin option in this Southampton pitch.

  1. Tom Latham, Devon Conway, 3. Kane Williamson*, 4. Ross Taylor, 5. Henry Nicholls, 6. BJ Watling (WK), 7. Colin de Grandhomme/Kyle Jamieson/Matt Henry, 8. Tim Southee, 9. Neil Wagner, 10. Trent Boult, 11. Ajaz Patel

Squad: Will Young, Tom Blundell (WK)

Mitchell Santner, Daryl Mitchell, Doug Bracewell, Jacob Duffy, and Rachin Ravindra failed to make the final cut.


I honestly cannot see a way past the weather. Both teams have excellent bowling options, so unless both teams suffer collapses twice, a result would be very hard to attain.

Would love if we get a full game, but for now, going with a Draw.

Verdict: Draw 0-0

If the game does happen, what am I excited for the most? Neil Wagner’s intensity, Colin de Grandhomme’s hairdo, Williamson-Kohli-Southee’s continuing journey from U-19 World Cup, Pujara-Pant combination, Ross Taylor’s wisdom, an emotional sunset to Watling’s wonderful career, and in general, just a hard-fought sporting final.

IndiaNew Zealand
MVPAjinkya RahaneHenry Nicholls
Most RunsRohit SharmaTom Latham
Most WicketsIshant SharmaTim Southee
X-FactorRavichandran AshwinAjaz Patel
World Test Championship Final Preview – Prediction

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Also comment below with out thoughts on this Alternative World Test Championship Table!

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World Test Championship Records

Are there are records that can be broken in the World Test Championship Final?


It is really interesting that even though NZ made it to the finals, there is nobody in the top 15 run-scorer. Combination of several players standing up and the fact that NZ did not play as many games. Kane Williamson is at 16th with 817 runs and Tom Latham is 25th with 680 runs.

India, on the other hand, have 5 batters in the Top 15:

  • Rahane – 1095 (5th)
  • Rohit Sharma – 1030 (6th)
  • Kohli – 877 (11th)
  • Agarwal – 857 (12th)
  • Pujara – 818 (15th)


Ashwin is on #3 with 67 wickets and Southee is New Zealand’s best at #5 with 51 wickets.

  • Kyle Jamieson – 36 (12th)
  • Ishant Sharma – 36 (13th)
  • Mohammad Shami – 36 (14th)
  • Jasprit Bumrah – 34 (16th)
  • Trent Boult – 34 (18th)
  • Neil Wagner – 32 (20th)

Fielding and Dismissals

Both teams are pretty close on this list with BJ Watling – 43 dismissals (4th) and Rishabh Pant – 40 (5th).

In terms of catches, Rahane – 22 catches (4th) and Ross Taylor – 18 (5th) are at the top with Rohit Sharma – 16 (6th) and Virat Kohli – 16 (7th) close behind. New Zealand’s next best is Tom Latham – 14 (12th).

Most RunsMost WicketsMost CatchesMost Dismissals
Marnus Labuschagne – 1675Pat Cummins – 70Joe Root – 34Tim Paine – 65
Joe Root – 1660Stuart Broad – 69Steve Smith – 27Jos Buttler – 50
Steve Smith – 1341Ravichandran Ashwin – 67Ben Stokes – 25Quinton de Kock – 46
Ben Stokes – 1334Nathan Lyon – 56Ajinkya Rahane – 22BJ Watling – 43
Ajinkya Rahane – 1095 Tim Southee – 51Ross Taylor – 18Rishabh Pant – 40
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