The WTC final pits two of the modern batting greats in Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson against each other. Both have scored more than 7,000 Test runs apiece, with each averaging over fifty.
The Indian captain, however, has the better record in England, having made two Test hundreds during the 2018 series.
But with the likes of Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane to fall back on, India have the slight edge on the batting front.
Both teams boast exceptional bowling attacks as well with the likes of Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult among some of the best in world cricket currently. But with Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja in their arsenal, India have a greater variety on show.
India, though, haven’t had proper match practice going into the WTC final, and have had to rely on training sessions and intra-squad games.
New Zealand, on the other hand, only recently played a two-Test series against hosts England, which they won 1-0 — something that will put them in good stead going into the WTC final.
When will India vs New Zealand WTC final be played?
The WTC final between India and New Zealand will begin on Friday, June 18.
What will be the match timings for Test final match between India and New Zealand?
The WTC final between the India’s cricket team and the New Zealand’s cricket team will begin at 3:00 pm India time (10:30 am BST).
Where will WTC final will be played?
The venue for the ICC WTC final between IND vs NZ is The Ageas Bowl, Southampton.
At what time will IND vs NZ WTC final live toss take place?
The New Zealand vs India live toss for WTC final will take place 30 minutes before the scheduled start of play that is 2:30 pm IST or 10:00 am BST.
Which TV channels will telecast WTC final live in India?
The India vs New Zealand WTC final will be telecast live on Star Sports Network. Star Sports 1 HD/SD will live broadcast the matches with English commentary.
How to live stream the India vs New Zealand WTC final in India?
You can watch the live streaming of IND vs NZ final Test match on Disney+ Hotstar VIP.
How to live steam India vs New Zealand WTC final for free?
You can live stream the India vs New Zealand WTC for free on JIO TV.
What to expect: If the forecast is anything to go by, the dreaded English summer rain could well be a constant companion during this match. There is, however, a reserve day and the outlook is improving so there remains hope of getting enough play for a positive result. If the game is drawn, the title will be shared.
The Hampshire Bowl surface typically offers assistance to the quicker bowlers – in the three Tests there last year, frontline spinners took just six wickets between them – and is set to be the same again. However, before the current wet weather, England had enjoyed something of a heatwave so the pitch is likely to start off dry. That could bring the spinners into things later on.
India announced their XI on the eve of the final. Although they like to play with a sixth batsman in overseas Tests, Ravindra Jadeja’s batting evolution has meant he has pipped Hanuma Vihari to that spot, also providing a spinning option while at it. R Ashwin will play as the frontline spinner with India opting for a three-man pace attack.
Mohammed Siraj’s impressive start to his Test career didn’t have a bearing on India’s pace combination as they welcome back Mohammed Shami, reuniting the Bumrah-Ishant-Shami axis for the first time since Wellington 2020.
Playing XI: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah
What they said:
“It means a lot to me, you know playing just this one format. It’s like playing a World Cup final in any other format. If we win, I think more young players will want to play Test cricket in India. Even across the world, Test cricket needs to survive and having this World Test Championship is a very good way to do it. Each and every series means a lot. Winning every Test gives you points. I think this should continue and I feel if India does well, many youngsters will want to play this format and would want to be part of the finals when the next cycle comes.”–Cheteshwar Pujara, on the enormity of the occasion.
“I just think it’s really exciting to be here. The whole New Zealand side are really excited, it’s going to be a great occasion, playing against India. We’ve only been number one for a few weeks, they have been number one for five or six years so they are going to be a really hard opposition to play against. But we’re looking forward to that.” ––Ross Taylor, on the challenge ahead of New Zealand.
Barring any late injuries, New Zealand’s top seven will pick itself. Colin de Grandhomme won the selection battle with Daryl Mitchell, who was left out of the 15-man squad, and will bat at seven as he did during the first Test against England at Lord’s while Devon Conway’s brilliant start to his Test career against England will see him open alongside Tom Latham.
The decision New Zealand have to make is whether to pick four quicks or three and the spin of Ajaz Patel. Arguably, their strongest combination would be the four-man battery of seam and swing, a strategy they have employed before in Tests. It is a tricky call.
Possible XI: Devon Conway, Tom Latham, Kane Williamson (c), Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling (wk), Colin de Grandhomme, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner/Ajaz Patel, Trent Boult