High-Flying New Zealand side will take on formidable India in the 2021 World Test Championship final, starting from Jun 18 in Southampton.
This is going to be the first-ever World Test Championship final that will be played at The Ageas Bowl.
New Zealand will enter the contest as underdogs despite playing a lot of cricket in England in the past few weeks..
However, New Zealand will be hoping to deliver their best cricket with the bat and ball against one of the best cricket teams in the world of cricket.
New Zealand will be led by right-handed batsman Kane Williamson who will also have the services of openers Devon Conway, Tom Latham, middle-order duo of Henry Nicholls and Ross Taylor to put some decent totals on the board in this World Test Championship final.
Colin de Grandhomme missed the two-match Test series against England and might have to sit on the sidelines for the inaugural World Test Championship final against India. Ajaz Patel, Matt Henry, Will Young and Neil Wagner produced excellent performances to help New Zealand beat England at Edgbaston. It seems certain that New Zealand will field all-pace attack for this inaugural World Test Championship final.
On the bowling front, the side will be relying on the pace quartet of Neil Wagner, Trent Boult, Tim Southee and Kyle Jamieson to deliver crucial breakthroughs with the new-ball. Matt Henry could come into the XI if there is something favorable for the quick bowlers.
On the other hand, team India will enter the contest as favorites after beating England in a four-match Test series played at home in February.
India will be led by star batsman Virat Kohli who will have the services of openers Rohit Sharma, Shubham Gill and middle duo order of Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara to put the New Zealand team on the back foot by having ample amount of runs on the board.
After performing exceedingly well in Australia, rookie opener Shubnam Gill has retained his place in the final XI. He is expected to open the innings with Rohit Sharma for the inaugural World Test Championship.
On the bowling front, the visitors will be relying heavily on the likes of star fast-bowler Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami and Ishant Sharma to dismantle New Zealand’s batting lineup. Mohammed Siraj and Umesh Yadav are other two pace options included in the squad for the World Test Championship final against New Zealand.
Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin will be two spin options for India for this grand finale. Given the conditions might be more seamer friendly at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton, India have decided to field their strongest XI in this World Test Championship final.
Both teams last met during the two-match Test series played in New Zealand in January 2020 where the Black Caps completed a clean sweep over India, courtesy splendid performances from Kyle Jamieson, Kane Williamson and Tom Latham
In the last two meetings between both teams in the five-day format, it is advantage to New Zealand, who emerged victorious on both the occasions.