WTC Final: India face New Zealand at The Ageas Bowl, from June 18.© AFP
The top two teams in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Test rankings – New Zealand and India – will lock horns with each other in the first-ever World Test Championship (WTC) final, starting on June 18, at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton. While India captain Virat Kohli will carry the expectations and dreams of billions, many cricket romantics will hope to see at least one happy ending for the Kane Williamson-led New Zealand. Ahead of the summit clash on Friday, a few greats of the game weighed in on the merits and demerits of both sides in a video posted on ICC’s official Twitter handle.
“Kohli vs Williamson. The battle of the bowling attacks. Legends preview the #WTC21 Final clash between India and New Zealand,” ICC captioned the video.
Kohli WilliamsonThe battle of the bowling attack legends preview the #WTC21 Final clash between India and New Zealand . Former England great Ian Botham reckoned that “it’s a game you don’t want to miss. There are so many talents going to be on that field”.
Former Australia skipper Ian Chappell said, “You are going to be fortunate to see two of the finest batsmen in the world going head-to-head in the World Test Championship final. Williamson is a very effective batsman. Kohli is more flamboyant. He has a tendency to do good things in big games.”
On the other hand, Australian bowling legend Shane Warne is looking forward to seeing the match-up between “the two contrasting captains”.
Comparing Williamson and Kohli as individuals, former South African captain Graeme Smith opined that while the Kiwi star is a “very reserved” player, the Indian captain brings passion into the game. “Kane is an excellent player, really smart in strategy. Kohli leads from the front. If we talk about Kane and Virat as players, then they are two best players in the world,” Smith added.
Meanwhile, Sri Lankan great Mahela Jayawardene believes that the WTC final is going to a contest between bowlers.
The inaugural WTC final between India and New Zealand will kick off on June 18 at 3:30 pm (IST).