World Test Championship (WTC) Final is less than a month away and the hype around the event is already sky-rocketing! The two finalists - India and New Zealand - look to be shaping up well to vie for the crown as the Ageas Bowl, Southampton, gets ready to host the mega event from June 18-22.
"ICC World Test Championship Final, here we come" #TeamIndia share their emotions of reaching the ICC WTC Final & speak about the road which led to the summit clash, where they will face NZ 👌👌 - By @RajalArora @Paytm #INDvENG— BCCI (@BCCI) March 6, 2021
Full feature 🎥 👉 https://t.co/ENdft5YN53 pic.twitter.com/vnih0OT7vQ
While both teams appear equally strong on paper, New Zealand's legendary cricketer Richard Hadlee feels the team that would adapt to the conditions faster would have the edge.
"It all comes down as to who is better prepared and who adapts better to the English conditions the quickest," Hadlee was quoted as saying by International Cricket Council.
"Both teams have high-class batsmen so it will be an interesting game to watch. It is too difficult to call a winner at this stage," he added.
Too close to call 📈— ICC (@ICC) May 25, 2021
That's what @BLACKCAPS legend Sir Richard Hadlee thinks of the #WTC21 Final under one month out 😱 pic.twitter.com/aJIOO13jRZ
Hadlee, believes that even though India and New Zealand will not be having any home advantage, the cooler climate will give the Kiwis an upper hand over India.
"The weather may also play a part and if it is cold that will favour New Zealand. The Duke ball will suit both team’s fast bowlers especially the genuine swing bowlers and the Kiwis are well served in that department with (Tim) Southee, (Trent) Boult and (Kyle) Jamieson. If the ball seams around off the pitch, batsmen in both teams will be challenged," he said.
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India finished the group stage of WTC as the table-toppers, while Kane Williamson's men ended as No. 2. Even though the final is first of its kind, Hadlee feels that the teams will not let any pressure affect their game.
"The Test Championship is a one-off game. Yes, it is a final, but I don’t think either team will be too fazed about it. It is a neutral ground with no home team advantage," he signed off.