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The World Test Championship Final 2021

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Post by msp83 Sun 13 Jun 2021, 4:23 pm

First topic message reminder :

The World Test Championship has been something that many of us wanted for a long time, it took time to materialize, and in the middle changed the point system as the pandemic struck. There are imperfections and work need to be done to make more rounded. But it is a great initiative for the truest format. And I feel it merits a separat thread, outside the Rest of the World stuff...
India and New Zealand will be contesting for the first Championship title from 18th June. Both these sides have had some impressive success on way to the final. India's series win against Australia has to be their performance of the cycle, while New Zealand had a fine home record and then they capped it with a first series win in more than 20 years in England just before the final.
Both the sides have also shown some fine bench strength in recent times. India won in Australia effectively without Kohli, and for parts of the series, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav, Rohit Sharma, and Ishant Sharma who couldn't even make it to the touring party as he was injured. Jadeja and Shami were unavailable for their home series win against England as well. In their absence, Mohammad Siraj, Washington Sundar, Axar Patel, Shubman Gill, Shardul Thakur, all emerged and Gill has become first choice and Siraj has become first choice squad at the very least. All the original first choice players are now available in the extended squad.
As for New Zealand, their most recent test win, a demolition job on England was achieved with the world number one test batter and their skipper Kane Williamson, Tim Southee, Kyle Jamieson and BJ Watling. Devon Conwy has emerged and has suggested tha he has it in him to solve a major problem New Zealand have had even during this winning run, that of a partner for Tom Latham. Will Young's emergence indicates that even if the 37 year old Ross Taylor decides to move on, they have options. Matthew Henry and Douglas Bracewell are very capable first reserves with a taste of and some success in test cricket, and in Tom Blundell, they have an able replacement for the retiring BJ Watling behind the stumps.
This strong bench strength also introduces some selection dilemmas for both sides as far as the final is concerned. Will it be Ashwin and Jadeja both for India? Will it be the first choice attack of Bumrah, Shami and Ishant, or will Siraj make it ahead of Ishant? Or will they go in with all 4 with Jadeja batting 7?
Will New Zealand bench one of their established pace quartet to include a spinner? Or will they play all 4 and the skippr himself take on the spin bowling responsibilities? Or will young Rachin Ravindra be given a surprise debut in the all-rounder slot? If they decide to bench one of the pacers, who would that be? Jamieson is the least experienced of the group but he has fine success against India. Southee and Boult have primed themselves quite fine leading up to the match. Neil Wagner did lack a bit of rhythm in the England series but finished it pretty well. Will be a very tough call for Williamson.
There is a lot exciting in the build-up to the game itself. Hope it will produce great excitement in terms of the actual cricket, like the last ICC event final!

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Post by Duty281 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 2:54 pm

alfie wrote:217 seems a bit light ... although the Indian opening bowlers are doing their best to make it look adequate with some testing early stuff...

Plenty of dark clouds around. Suggests light will be an issue later today - and I see from Duty's cheerful weather forecast for tomorrow there is not an outbreak of summer due yet. Couldn't have picked a worse week to hold this in Southampton, I'm afraid.

The good news is both Tuesday and Wednesday look absolutely free of rain, so there should be around 190 overs of play on those two days, plus whatever's left today. Will need a minor miracle for play tomorrow, but the ICC's reserve day (a rare outbreak of common sense) has given this game a chance.

New Zealand may be able to force a win with a strong 3rd innings bowling performance...as Conway hits a lovely cover drive for a rare four. What a find he's been for the Kiwis.

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Post by msp83 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 3:04 pm

Bumrah not quite on his A game yet, and the ball's not swinging that much for the Indians. And Kohli not yet bringing Shami on.
I'd have given him the new ball ahead of Ishant usually, but for the 2 lefties opening the innings. Finally, he's on at last...
I would also not mind an exploratory couple of early overs for Ravichandran Ashwin.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 20 Jun 2021, 4:15 pm

shami has bowled brilliantly and should have had 2 wickets to his name
Ishant underwhelmingly
Bumrah hasn't bowled as much

Ashwin has had no assistance

Ind hasn't allowed them to get away and things change very fast as bowlers find their rythm
Ind has to keep plugging away 217 is far away
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Post by Duty281 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 4:37 pm

Perfect start from these two. Have offered up a few half-chances but nothing major. Two spinners for India was a mistake on this.

Kiwis need to bat through most of day five (I'm presuming no play tomorrow) and get that score up to 300-350, leaving India battling for survival on day six.

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Post by msp83 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 5:17 pm

So at 70 without loss having batted through 34 overs, New Zealand openers are beginning to open up. Kohli and co might be wondering about that one breakthrough. Just doesn't look like coming... Even when the edge is found, it is not going to hands, and the ball, while has kept the bowlers interested, hasn't been talking as much as it was doing in the hands of the New Zealand quicks. Bumrah hasn't looked in great rhythm. Ashwin has kept it quiet but is not getting the ball to do anything off the pitch. Shami has looked the most threatening and found a few edges only for them to go in the gaps or drop well short of fielders.
New Zealand moving into a commanding position...

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Post by msp83 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 5:20 pm

Think its time to get Jadeja on.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 20 Jun 2021, 5:20 pm

The Problem is't spinner...but that the seamers have shown the same fla that NZ seamers did yesterday
a foot short and wide of the stumps
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Post by Duty281 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 6:04 pm

50 for Conway. clap

Both India and England can't figure him out. Another hour left, I think, if the light holds so a good chance for New Zealand to eliminate around half of the remaining deficit.

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Post by msp83 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 6:44 pm

India got a lift in what turned out to be the last over of the day with Conway giving it away with a poor shot of Ishant. New Zealand have batted impressively. The Indian bowlers bowled alright in patches. Didn't challenge the batters as much as the New Zealand bowlers did.
Shami bowled really well without anything to show for his efforts. Ishant was OK. Ashwin got the important first breakthrough with one that was given some air, and not depending on the track... Jadeja didn't bowl much but was his usual economical self when he came on and did threaten the pad a couple of times. Jasprit Bumrah though, had a poor day in office. Just didn't look in rhythm from the outset.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 20 Jun 2021, 6:48 pm

I am afraid India's seamers are looking short of top test match rhythm
These are our best 3 and quite good quality bowlers...nothing wrong with selecting them.
They have exuded the same folly that NZ did yesterday...a couple of feet too short and length too far wide
Can they push the length up and pull the line into the stumps like the Kiwis did...and looked unplayable The World Test Championship Final 2021 - Page 3 2753

I am not sure its so easy...unlike the Kiwis they do not have real test match practise and yards under their belt...they are coming from cold....with some non competitive warm up glorified net games

217 is still too far away and if you get line and length right....there is still time to make amends

Else the batting will have to stand up very firm to see off the limited time left in the game

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Post by Duty281 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 7:13 pm

Yep, India are short of rhythm, NZ are not. That's a major reason for why I made NZ strong favourites - and didn't see India being 90-10 favourites!

Seems Conway's weakness is leg-stump half-volleys. Means that when NZ tour England next summer, the English have to get Jade Dernbach out of retirement.

Kiwis need to find 200+ runs from their current position. Then they can pin India into a position where NZ win/draw are the only realistic results. Williamson and Nicholls the key men who have to add the bulk. Whatever Taylor, Watling, CDG and the rest can find is a bonus.

Should be around 190 overs left in the game from here.

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Post by msp83 Sun 20 Jun 2021, 7:30 pm

KP_fan wrote:I am afraid India's seamers are looking short of top test match rhythm
These are our best 3 and quite good quality bowlers...nothing wrong with selecting them.
They have exuded the same folly that NZ did yesterday...a couple of feet too short and length  too far wide
Can they push the length up and pull the line into the stumps like the Kiwis did...and looked unplayable The World Test Championship Final 2021 - Page 3 2753

I am not sure its so easy...unlike the Kiwis they do not have real test match practise and yards under their belt...they are coming from cold....with some non competitive warm up glorified net games

217 is still too far away and if you get line and length right....there is still time to make amends

Else the batting will have to stand up very firm to see off the limited time left in the game


Absolutely no issues with the selections. They've gone in with Ashwin as the first choice spinner, and Jadeja is there as much for his batting as his bowling... And though Siraj is making a solid case for himself, Bumrah, Shami and Ishant are the top 3 seamers for this side. Picking Siraj as a 4th isn't a realistic option with that meaning they go in with 4 number 11s...
It isn't easy to just turn up and bowl quite differently next morning. But we've seen Bumrah and co doing some fantastic things in the past, including remarkable turnarounds. I am sure Jasprit would be pretty upset with himself. Got a promotion in the batting order only to get out first ball!, and then this poor show by his standards when he had the ball in his hand.
So how does it look like for tomorrow? Any chance of some play?

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Post by alfie Mon 21 Jun 2021, 6:21 am

NZ certainly had the better of that day - had Conway not fallen at the death I'd have said they were in a commanding position but they are still well on top ; though whether the awful weather will render that irrelevant we wait to see. They would love to turn this start into a big lead and pressure India second time around : questionable whether they'll be able to score quickly enough to make that possible.

Thought Shami was excellent for India and really had no luck ; the other bowlers really weren't exactly rubbish either , though Bumrah might be a bit disappointed with his efforts. These NZ bats just don't sell their wickets easily , as England found out earlier. Batting did not look easy especially early on : hence the slow scoring.

Reckon the Indian bowling will improve with overs under their belts so not expecting easy pickings for Williamson & Co on resumption. But I think they'll need to induce a pretty rapid collapse if they're to get back in with a serious winning chance , given all the time lost already - even if we don't lose another complete day as Duty is direly predicting...

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Post by Duty281 Mon 21 Jun 2021, 9:55 am

It has been raining all night in Southampton. It's still raining now. It's forecast to rain all day.

Prospects of play today = nil.

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Post by alfie Mon 21 Jun 2021, 10:23 am

Duty281 wrote:It has been raining all night in Southampton. It's still raining now. It's forecast to rain all day.

Prospects of play today = nil.


Sad

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Post by KP_fan Mon 21 Jun 2021, 11:42 am

Duty281 wrote:It has been raining all night in Southampton. It's still raining now. It's forecast to rain all day.

Prospects of play today = nil.
How is it for tomm and after tomm
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Post by Duty281 Mon 21 Jun 2021, 11:48 am

KP_fan wrote:
Duty281 wrote:It has been raining all night in Southampton. It's still raining now. It's forecast to rain all day.

Prospects of play today = nil.
How is it for tomm and after tomm

Should be completely dry both days, bright sunshine on Wednesday.

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Post by guildfordbat Mon 21 Jun 2021, 1:05 pm

With apologies to Craig, my NZ roadmap for Tuesday.
Bat safely through the first session losing no more than 1 wicket. Bat with more dash after lunch and particularly in the final session, get the lead to 180+ and have a dart at India in the last 15 minutes.

That's the best way I can see of a positive result ... and you still won't catch me putting money on it!

Pretty sure India will be content to take the draw from where they are now.

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Post by Duty281 Mon 21 Jun 2021, 3:02 pm

Play abandoned for the day.

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Post by msp83 Mon 21 Jun 2021, 6:56 pm

guildfordbat wrote:With apologies to Craig, my NZ roadmap for Tuesday.
Bat safely through the first session losing no more than 1 wicket. Bat with more dash after lunch and particularly in the final session, get the lead to 180+ and have a dart at India in the last 15 minutes.

That's the best way I can see of a positive result ... and you still won't catch me putting money on it!

Pretty sure India will be content to take the draw from where they are now.
If we get 2 full days, there could yet be a result. Hope the weather stays nice for the rest of the game at least. Don't think the combination of conditions and Indian bowling would allow New Zealand score 397 + runs in a day's batting. But even if they manage a lead of 80 and with 4 sessions left, India could end up being the only team that can lose from there. But if the Indian bowling get their act together tomorrow, and dismiss NZ with a 20 run lead for either sides, then anything could be possible.
New Zealand have their 2 best batters together to start the next day. Williamson is the one they would be looking to hold the innings together, while for a quicker tempo, it will have to be Rosco. But if they are separated early and if they pick up Nicholls early, then the England series showed the New Zealand batting does not always have the solidity. I know my man Watling is there and he's among the biggest of crisis batters and CDG can throw his bat around. But if there are early wickets tomorrow, don't think that will be New Zealand's priority. Separating the NZ top pair should be India's priority tomorrow, ideally get both for not much more, and surely not let Rosco settle. Because once he gets in, he can score quickly even when not in full control, as he showed in that 80 against England last week.

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Post by alfie Tue 22 Jun 2021, 6:18 am

msp83 wrote:
guildfordbat wrote:With apologies to Craig, my NZ roadmap for Tuesday.
Bat safely through the first session losing no more than 1 wicket. Bat with more dash after lunch and particularly in the final session, get the lead to 180+ and have a dart at India in the last 15 minutes.

That's the best way I can see of a positive result ... and you still won't catch me putting money on it!

Pretty sure India will be content to take the draw from where they are now.
If we get 2 full days, there could yet be a result. Hope the weather stays nice for the rest of the game at least. Don't think the combination of conditions and Indian bowling would allow New Zealand score 397 + runs in a day's batting. But even if they manage a lead of 80 and with 4 sessions left, India could end up being the only team that can lose from there. But if the Indian bowling get their act together tomorrow, and dismiss NZ with a 20 run lead for either sides, then anything could be possible.
New Zealand have their 2 best batters together to start the next day. Williamson is the one they would be looking to hold the innings together, while for a quicker tempo, it will have to be Rosco. But if they are separated early and if they pick up Nicholls early, then the England series showed the New Zealand batting does not always have the solidity. I know my man Watling is there and he's among the biggest of crisis batters and CDG can throw his bat around. But if there are early wickets tomorrow, don't think that will be New Zealand's priority. Separating the NZ top pair should be India's priority tomorrow, ideally get both for not much more, and surely not let Rosco settle. Because once he gets in, he can score quickly even when not in full control, as he showed in that 80 against England last week.

Actually , guildford's roadmap only requires them to score 297 to get that lead of 180 : certainly far from impossible...though not easy against a good Indian attack. Even if they did I'd back India to bat long enough on day five to be safe.
India would really need to absolutely skittle NZ on Tuesday to have any chance of building a lead they'd see as adequate and still leave themselves time to bowl NZ out a second time. Very unlikely , I think.

Unfortunately I'm afraid the exceptional bad luck of such rotten weather over this particular four days has rather spoiled this WTC final , despite the forethought of scheduling a spare day. A real pity.

We can still and watch and hope for a miracle finish , I guess...

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 22 Jun 2021, 8:25 am

Thanks, Alfie. Yeah, NZ getting 290 to 300 more runs in almost all of today was what I had in mind. Then having a quick dart before stumps.

Stretching and ambitious but, as you say, certainly far from impossible.

Btw, do an extra 8 overs get added on today?

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 9:45 am

Yes, they are trying to play 98 overs today, but I'm unsure if it's normal day five rules (as long as it takes to get the overs in), or day one-four rules (can only play for seven hours maximum).

Should be two full days of play with the weather set fair, and even some sunshine around which should ward off any prospect of 'bad light'.

I don't think a NZ win is that improbable. If they can bat 80 further overs at 2.5-3 runs per over, they'll have a lead of 84-124. If they can then bowl India out in 90 overs, with the Indians scoring at no greater than 2.5 an over, the Kiwis will have a chase of around 100-150 to complete in around 20 overs or so.

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 22 Jun 2021, 9:56 am

Duty281 wrote:Yes, they are trying to play 98 overs today, but I'm unsure if it's normal day five rules (as long as it takes to get the overs in), or day one-four rules (can only play for seven hours maximum).

Should be two full days of play with the weather set fair, and even some sunshine around which should ward off any prospect of 'bad light'.

I don't think a NZ win is that improbable. If they can bat 80 further overs at 2.5-3 runs per over, they'll have a lead of 84-124. If they can then bowl India out in 90 overs, with the Indians scoring at no greater than 2.5 an over, the Kiwis will have a chase of around 100-150 to complete in around 20 overs or so.

Thanks, Duty. Yeah, I was wondering if there would be any particular form of nonsense applying to the overs and time allowed for today with it being the ''last day'' even though there's one more to go! Rolling Eyes

As I was getting at yesterday, I wouldn't put money on a NZ win (that sort of business is for you, KP-f and Olly) but I don't think it's out of the question.

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 10:29 am

Delayed start due to rain. Not even meant to be raining today! And apparently it's the thinnest of English drizzle preventing a start on-time.

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Post by alfie Tue 22 Jun 2021, 10:37 am

I don't believe it...moments before the start and it's rained again !

Almost time for the players to say let's give up on this game and go to the pub...

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 10:54 am

Apparently it's the type of rain that wouldn't take the players off if they were already on...but because they're off they can't come on because of it. Shame.

And the forecast in Southampton is dry for most of the next week. They really couldn't have picked a worse week this summer.

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 22 Jun 2021, 11:04 am

And my NZ roadmap was built upon Duty's weathermap!!  Shocked Wink

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 11:22 am

Right, play starts at 11:30. 91 overs is the aim.

11:30-13:30
14:10-16:10
16:30-19:00

Play can only go on until 7, absolutely no later, so little chance of getting the full 91 overs in if the usual slow over rates persist.

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Post by KP_fan Tue 22 Jun 2021, 12:31 pm

16 runs in first hour....couple of half chances but no real chance
Indians are bowling better than last day...but not quite full enuf or close enuf to batters
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 22 Jun 2021, 12:35 pm

I presume the media who were so outraged at England "not having a go" at Lords, will be slating New Zealand's under two runs per over in this innings and no intent whatsoever today... censored Whistle
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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 12:37 pm

Very tough out there, only 16 runs in the opening 65 minutes. Agree that the Indians aren't bowling full enough, a lot of the New Zealand defence is off the back foot which makes it easier.

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 1:19 pm

Lovely bowling from Sharma to get Nicholls. Four down and still a bit of a deficit to overcome.

Watling, in his final test, bowled cheaply after getting fooled by Shami. Might be heading to a one-innings shoot-out. Kiwis still down by 82.

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 22 Jun 2021, 1:36 pm

Lunch. NZ 5 down and precious few runs added in the shortened session.

My roadmap in tatters and the wheels coming off the NZ bus!

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Post by KP_fan Tue 22 Jun 2021, 2:09 pm

With the benefit of hindsight

And at the risk of sounding like one of the Yo Yo fans who swing after the fact

India is.looking like being one seamer short and two spinners too many
Not having either of bowling all-rounders in Pandya and Bhuvi....Forced India to go with 2 spinners who can bat
Gives comfort of having 5 bowlers but only notional
India need to get Shardul, bhuvi pandya in the mix and maybe recall Shankar
Eng is bound to serve them are last 3 such pitches
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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 2:24 pm

de Grandhomme seems intent on launching a counter-attack this afternoon. Probably the right move, with Williamson offering stability at the other end.

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 2:42 pm

Putting Jadeja on after lunch was a mistake. It let these two batsmen settle in nicely.

Now time for the new ball. Could be carnage.

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Post by Soul Requiem Tue 22 Jun 2021, 2:46 pm

The approach from both teams batting has been disappointing, more intent on not losing than trying to force a result. If you're under the cosh in the second innings then it's understandable but in the first innings is not good enough.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:23 pm

Jamieson again making the difference, quick fire 21 that is worth a lot more in the context. But Shami bounces him out, NZ still behind by 25. Guess Southee, Wagner and Boult are also going to have a dart.
Despite the godawful weather, the match is just about alive even now.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:31 pm

KP_fan wrote:With the benefit of hindsight

And at the risk of sounding like one of the Yo Yo fans who swing after the fact

India is.looking like being one seamer short and two spinners too many
Not having either of bowling all-rounders in Pandya and Bhuvi....Forced  India to go with 2 spinners who can bat
Gives comfort of having 5 bowlers but only  notional
India need to get Shardul, bhuvi pandya in the mix and maybe recall Shankar
Eng is bound to serve them are last 3 such pitches
Not sure, KPF. Think we are feeling this way because of our top 3, particularly Ishant and Bumrah, haven't been quite on their A game. Think Ashwin and Jadeja have done their bit. Jadeja kept it quiet in his 7 overs as expected, and Ashwin prized one out to give them the opening when nothing was working for them otherwise. And don't forget his 22 at 8. Bumrah is having a poor game overall, and Ishant today, despite the wicket, was a bit of a throwback to Ishant 1.0, not making the batters play a lot...
And think Kohli missed a trick by not bowling Ashwin in the first hour. We know he can at times be devastating on a moist pitch...
And I am sorry, Vijay Shankar is not anywhere near good enough to be a semi-decent parttime test bowler.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:45 pm

The only bowler who could have realistically be in the mix was Bhuvneshwar. He's a number 9 who could have batted 8, and as a supreme swing artist, he surely could have been handful with the ball.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:48 pm

New Zealand closing in on that first innings lead. Ishant drops Southee on his follow-through to help them along. Southee has been rather restrained by his standards. Think again, Kohli should bring Ashwin on. Perhaps it could go either way as Southee might connect with a few slogs, but Ashwin's craft is quality and he might be able to buy that wicket. Particularly since Bumrah is not able to get those yorkers in...

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:51 pm

The skipper guides New Zealand into the lead.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:54 pm

New Zealand almost reaching a point of not losing the game. Think now they should play positively, try stretching that lead and then see how India responds with the bat...
For India, the window of opportunity is closing in. Not just the runs, but time as well. They need to rap this up for the next 20 runs at max, and in the next 20 minutes.
Not quite see that happening, the New Zealanders seem to have slowly drained the energy out of the Indians.

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Post by KP_fan Tue 22 Jun 2021, 3:59 pm

msp83 wrote:The only bowler who could have realistically be in the mix was Bhuvneshwar. He's a number 9 who could have batted 8, and as a supreme swing artist, he surely could have been handful with the ball.

Shardul is an equal or better batsman than Bhuvi
Until Nos 8 Ind was ahead their 9, 10, 11 are betetr than Indians and giving NZ a small or possibly moderate lead
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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 4:01 pm

Ishant has at last tempted Williamson into an indiscretion outside off for Kohli to complete the catch. NZ only 9 ahead as R Ashwin's on at last.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 4:03 pm

KP_fan wrote:
msp83 wrote:The only bowler who could have realistically be in the mix was Bhuvneshwar. He's a number 9 who could have batted 8, and as a supreme swing artist, he surely could have been handful with the ball.

Shardul is an equal  or better batsman than Bhuvi
Until Nos 8 Ind was ahead their 9, 10, 11 are betetr than Indians and giving NZ a small or possibly moderate lead
Shardul probably is a decent enough bat at par with Bhuvi. But Bhuvi, when fit, is a far better bowler particularly in English conditions.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 4:04 pm

The Southee drop is already proving costly as he's getting on to his Shahid Afridi persona!

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 4:12 pm

Ashwin gets Wagner, NZ lead up to 18. How far can Boult and Southee stretch the lead? New Zealand still not quite in the safe zone.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jun 2021, 4:15 pm

Jadeja bowled a couple of no-balls, and now Ashwin! The 2 pros should know that this is absolutely unacceptable from spinners, particularly such experienced ones. Really not on!

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