The BlackCaps on Tuesday, revealed the first look of the special ball that will be used in the WTC final between India and New Zealand.
The first edition of the World Test Championship proved to be a huge success, with former pundits and players giving a thumbs up to the format that will determine the ultimate strong team of Test matches in a few days’ time. Hence, it was pretty obvious that the setting and the build-up to WTC final between India and New Zealand is expected to be an equally grand affair.
If the special jerseys weren’t a gesture strong enough, the BlackCaps on Tuesday, revealed the first look of the ball that will be used in the summit clash. The ‘red cherry’ has ‘ICC WTC Final 2021 India vs New Zealand’ written on it, accompanied by the ICC logo. Besides the image of the ball, The BlackCaps also revealed the jersey which New Zealand would be sporting during the match.
The all-important WTC final between India and New Zealand would begin on Friday at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton. Both teams have announced their squad of 15 players for the big final. New Zealand have been bolstered by the return of their captain Kane Williamson and veteran wicketkeeper BJ Watling, for whom, the WTC final would be his last appearance for New Zealand. Both had to miss the second Test against England due to injuries but have been declared fit.
For India, the names of the 15 players which was announced was on expected lines. India did not include Axar Patel, Shardul Thakur, Washington Sundar, KL Rahul and Mayank Agarwal, which means that Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill, who opened the innings for India in Australia and during the home series against England would once again be the openers for the WTC final.
For India, New Zealand is their bogey team as far as ICC events go. In fact, it was in 2003 that India last beat New Zealand in an ICC event – which was the 2003 World Cup. Ever since, New Zealand have beaten India in the 2007 World T20, 2016 World T20 and the semi-final of the 2019 World Cup. Besides, New Zealand is the only team India have not beaten during the inaugural World Test Championship tournament, losing to them 0-2 during their tour in early 2020.