NEW ZEALAND TEST CHAMPION

NEWZELAND – TEST CHAMPIONS

“It’s a special feeling. It’s nice to get one under the belt. I’d like to thank Virat and the Indian team. The heart that our team showed was commendable. It’s the first time we have come away with a world title, and the 22 players who played a big part in getting across the line deserve all the appreciation. This will be remembered for a long time. We don’t always have all the stars, and we saw that in this match. We saw so much heart and commitment. We know how strong the Indian side is, in all conditions.”

Kane Williamson, New Zealand Skipper after winning the WTC title

Courtesy : Times of India

This wonderful 144 year old sport saw a World Test Champion the New Zealand team, at the altar of The Ageas Bowl, Southampton , England on the 23rd June 2021 for the first time.  A ICC  major tournament title eluding the Black Cap team at last found a major title as the Kiwis beat India in the World Test Championship Final. The long wait was over. 

A team that is playing test cricket from 1930 this title win is a great boost for the New Zealand.  Athers (Mike Atherton) calls this is the GOLDEN ERA of New Zealand cricket.  And for a change Michael Waughan’s prophecy came true.  And our own commentator DK called Fire and Ice when he referred to Kohli and Williamson. 

And the joy sees no bound as the New Zealand players get their hands on the coveted Mace, finally in the midst of fireworks light up still a bright evening sky in Southampton.

And the senior pro Ross Taylor hit the winning runs for the Kiwis and watching this feat from the other end is the Black Cap teams ever smiling captain Kane Williamson.  The two senior pros put in their best performance and showed so much patience, resilience that they were cut out of their task of winning the Inaugural WTC title.  And also a fitting finale for their Wicket Keeper batter, B.J. Watling as he gets his hand on the Mace.

Courtesy : Blackcaps tweet

What a match we’ve had. A pitch that gave us a result even though two entire days were washed out, and excellent foresight – we must now acknowledge – from the ICC, to have this sixth day in reserve. Two superb teams who both played terrific cricket, but New Zealand were definitely the better team on this occasion, with more fast-bowling depth, the greater ability to swing the Dukes ball, and a more robust lower order.

The Player of the Match, Kyle Jamieson, the the tall and lanky, Kiwi bowler rose to the occasion well with his  sterling performance on the big stage breaking the backbone of the Indian batting with a scalp of 7 wickets ( including 5fer in the first innings) and also a cameo with the bat stole the show and ably supported by the other pace trio Tim Southee, Trent Boult and Neil Wagner .

The Indian batting unit failed miserably in both innings though their pace duo of Mohd. Shami ( 4 wickets) and Ishant Sharma   did well in the first innings to give a moderate lead of 32 runs for the Kiwis.  The much expected Indian pace bowler Jasprit Bumrah went wicketless was a surprise.  Of course the overcast conditions 0n the 2nd day ( as the first day play was washed out) was favourable to the Kiwis bowlers who exploited the seaming conditions well and it was too hot to handle the  Kiwis new found pace bowler, Kyle Jamieson by Indian batters and they restricted India 217 runs in the first innings and only the skipper and his deputy put up a semblance of fight in the first innings scoring 40+ runs and in the second innings it was a meek surrender by the Indian batters as they were folded up just for 170 runs and the New Zealand had to score 139 runs in 50 odd hours.  The Kiwis showed no panic in getting the total.  

While chasing the total the Kiwis lost two early wickets to India’s ace spinner R. Ashwin and the runs were drying up for the two senior pros at the crease.  But both Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor showed no urgency and were playing a waiting game and attacked when the Indian bowlers erred.

ROUND UP

  1. Indian Eves team salvaged a draw in the one-off test at Bristol, England as their tail ender batters Sneh Rana & Taniya Bhatia showed resilience as they put in an unbeaten 104 runs for the 9th wicket after the Indian women were asked to follow-on on the 4th day at the closing hours on 19th June 2021.  In fact they didn’t play Test cricket for 7 years and this one-off Test draw was a very good achievement.
  2. At Goss Islet, St. Lucia (west Indies) in the 2nd Test between West Indies and South Africa it was again the domination of the Visitors as they romped home by 158 runs.  Keshav Maharaj, the slow left arm spinner became the FIRST South African bowler to claim HAT TRICK in Tests as he claimed 5 wickets for 36 runs .

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