WTC Final- New Zealand beats India to register a historic victory

New Zealand defeats India in the WTC Final

An outstanding performance by New Zealand’s seamers and a sensational run chase by Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor helped the Black Caps made history by beating India to win the inaugural ICC World Test Championship. Kiwis entered the reserve day of the Final at the Rose Bowl in Southampton eyeing victory and their bowlers delivered in style to all-out India for 170 before Williamson and Taylor played a successful chase of 139 to secure a memorable eight-wicket win.

With India starting the reserve day at 64 for two in their second innings, with a lead of 32, all four results were still possible but the Black Caps’ pacers Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, and Neil Wagner combined to take the final eight wickets for the adjustment of just 106 more runs.

After the 3rd innings Kiwis’ had at least 53 overs to chase down 139 and, despite some early Ravichandran Ashwin-induced wobbles, their two most senior batsmen saw them over the line to become the first-ever winners of the ICC World Test Championship.

After the rain had washed out two of the first five days of this Test match, the ICC announced the use of its reserve day to increase the chances of a result, with 98 overs due to be bowled on day six, both sides still had chances on securing the win, tall-man Jamieson quickly put New Zealand on the front foot in the morning session as he got India captain Virat Kohli to nick behind for 13 and forced Cheteshwar Pujara to bottom edge to Taylor at slip shortly after.

The dangerous Rishabh Pant, who was dropped by Southee on five, counter-attacked, a fifth Indian wicket fell before lunch when Ajinkya Rahane (15) was caught behind by BJ Watling off Boult. The 35-year-old Watling who playing his final Test match of a distinguished international career took his third catch of the innings to remove Ravindra Jadeja after lunch and reduce India to 142 for six.

The unorthodox Pant had shown his class and played some big shots but couldn’t survive much as he was dismissed for 41 which felt like a huge moment for New Zealand. After the Pant dismissal hope of the Indian side was also gone as down order batsman Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, and Jasprit Bumrah couldn’t survive much and India got all-out for just 170 runs.

It was the first time since 2018 that no Indian batsman reached a half-century in either inning of a Test match and a target of 139 looked easily chase able for New Zealand.

At the start of the final innings, the Black Caps allowed openers Latham and Devon Conway to face out the eight overs before the tea, as they reached 19-0 at the interval. But scoring was slow and the pressure eventually was seen, as Latham came down the wicket, saw Ashwin’s delivery beat the bat and Pant smartly stumped him to make the score 33 for one.

Kane Williamson for just one run was given out LBW by umpire Michael Gough, again off Ashwin, and India thought they had the key wicket but the decision was overturned on review. on another side, Ashwin did catch Conway LBW shortly after to become the leading wicket-taker in the World Test Championship and reduce the Black Caps to 44/2 but Taylor (47 not out) and Williamson (52 not out) rebuilt by keeping the scoreboard ticking and punishing the bad balls. and chased the small total of 139 to secure a memorable eight-wicket win.

The New Zealand skipper reached the half-century mark, bringing up his 50 with a boundary, while Taylor scored the winning runs through the leg-side to win New Zealand’s second major international trophy, following their ICC Knock Out triumph back in 2000.

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