(Image Credit: BlackCaps/Twitter)
New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has said he is "really excited" to be playing in the inaugural edition of the World Test Championship final, which is slated to begin in less than a month from now. Williamson, who will lead the Black Caps in the final of WTC against India, also hailed the introduction of the championship for bringing in context to Test cricket. The Kiwi player further added that he is excited to play against Virat Kohli and Co. in the WTC final, adding "playing against India is always a fantastic challenge".
"I think we saw the context of the Test Championship. It brought in real excitement. We saw that in declarations, games getting really tight. Saw it in the India-Australia series, our series here against Pakistan with results had to be hard-fought for and you are willing to risk it. It’s really, really exciting to be involved in the final, obviously to win it would be that much better. Whenever you play India, it’s a fantastic challenge. It’s really exciting to be playing them," Williamson said.
🗣 "It's really, really exciting to be involved in the final, obviously to win it would be that much better"— ICC (@ICC) May 18, 2021
One month out from the #WTC21 Final, anticipation is growing among the @BCCI and @BLACKCAPS stars🏆 pic.twitter.com/79uJx2RcQ2
India will play a one-off Test against New Zealand starting June 18 to decide the inaugural winner of the World Test Championship. New Zealand players arrived in Southampton on May 17, while the Indian contingent is expected to leave for England on June 2. New Zealand will also play a two-match Test series against England ahead of the WTC final next month. Meanwhile, the Indian squad will have to quarantine for 10 days in England, for which arrangements have been made at a hotel in Ageas Bowl, where the team will stay and train for the WTC final.
India’s squad: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane (VC), Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (WK), R. Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Umesh Yadav, KL Rahul (subject to fitness clearance), Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper; subject to fitness clearance).
New Zealand's squad: Kane Williamson (C), Rachin Ravindra, Devon Conway, Jacob Duffy, Tom Blundell, Ross Taylor, BJ Watling (WK), Tom Latham, Daryll Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Colin de Grandhomme, Neil Wagner, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Mitchell Santner, Ajaz Patel, Doug Bracewell, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Will Young.