Road to Lord’s 2021: As it stands now
The second spot for ICC World Test Championship 2019-21 final is up for grabs for two teams – India and Australia, the former finding themselves in a better position.
After India’s 10-wicket win in the D/N Ahmedabad Test over England in two days, the hosts have moved up to number one on the championship table with 71 percent points, over New Zealand’s 70, who already have qualified for the final.
ICC World Test Championship 2019-21 table (after IND-ENG 3rd Test):
India – 71.0%
New Zealand – 70.0%
Australia – 69.2%
England – 64.1%
Pakistan – 43.3%
West Indies – 33.3%
South Africa – 30.0%
Sri Lanka – 16.7%
Bangladesh – 0.0%
India are leading the four-match series 2-1 after three matches. Virat Kohli’s team must ensure they do not lose the fourth Test, starting from March 4 at the same venue (day Test). A draw will be enough for them to join New Zealand.
England’s dreams for a home final at Lord’s are diminished after the defeat, as they required a scoreline of at least 3-1 in favour of them in the series.
However, if England manage to win the final Test, they will pave they way for arch-rivals Australia to the final. Australia are sitting third with 69.2 percent points in the WTC. At the start of India-England series, the Aussies needed the series to level or England to win by no bigger margin than 2-1.
England started their Asian tour with 2-0 triumph in Sri Lanka before coming to Chennai to hand India a 217-run defeat in the first Test. India bounced back in the next Test with 317-run win.
The race for Lord’s final got intriguing when India turned around in Australia in the 2020-21 Border-Gavaskar series, keeping the ghosts of 36 all-out in Adelaide aside to take themselves to 2-1 win in the four-match series.
The final of inaugural WTC will be played from June 18-22. New Zealand will face England (not as part of the championship) at Lord’s and Egbaston before the match.