The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), on Friday, announced the Test squad for the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand and the five-match Test series versus England. Ravindra Jadeja and Hanuma Vihari, who were injured during their heroics in Australia, have made a comeback. Jasprit Bumrah, who skipped a part of the England series at home for his wedding, is also back.
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson has stated that his team is thrilled to be part of the inaugural World Test Championship final as the tournament has added context to Test cricket. New Zealand, on Tuesday, confirmed their place in the WTC final with 70 percentage points after Australia decided to postpone their tour of South Africa owing to the growing COVID-19 cases in the latter nation.
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson ended 2020 as the No.1 batsman in Test cricket as the latest ICC Men’s Test Rankings were released on Thursday. Williamson moved past Indian captain Virat Kohli and Aussie run-machine Steve Smith to occupy the top slot.
Veteran New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor has stated that there is nothing wrong with both teams sharing the World Cup in case of a tie, and that a Super Over is not necessary to choose one winner. As everyone is aware, England were declared winners of the 2019 World Cup despite tying the final as well as the Super Over. Hosts England were named champions on the basis of a controversial boundary count rule.
Former India pace bowler Ashish Nehra feels that Indian captain Virat Kohli should have refrained from stating that 'ODIs are not important' after the series loss in New Zealand. It may be recalled while India whitewashed the Kiwis in the T20Is, the failed to win a single match in the ODI series and Tests that followed.
Team India's run as the number one Test team in the world is officially over. As per the latest rankings released on Friday, Australia are back on the top of the ratings with 116 points while New Zealand are second with 115. India have slided down to number three with 114 points.
The last international cricket match before the game took a break due to Coronavirus was played behind closed doors -- Australia vs New Zealand at the SCG. When the game resumes, it is highly likely that for a few months matches will be played indoors. However, former New Zealand captain Ross Taylor recently conceded that the match played in front of an empty stadium felt more like a warm-up game than a proper international fixture. The game was played on March 15 after which subsequent cricketing activities have been put on hold.