Former Indian captain and the current President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Sourav Ganguly feels that New Zealand will have a slight advantage in the World Test Championship final against India given the fact that they will come into the game having already played a couple of Test matches in England.
Ganguly praised the Kane Williamson-led unit for the manner in which they played in the two-match series against England.
After having missed out on an opportunity to win the first Test at Lord’s, New Zealand, despite making a plethora of changes to their playing 11, won the second Test at Edgbaston at a canter.
While Devon Conway, Will Young, Ross Taylor player a defining role with the bat, the likes of Matt Henry, Neil Wagner, and Ajaz Patel set up the eight-wicket win with brilliant performances with the ball.
“New Zealand will have a slight advantage because they have played in these conditions and beat England in their own backyard, which is not easy at all. This was a big series for NZ, they just look so solid. New Zealand won the 2nd Test at Edgbaston without Kane Williamson, Kyle Jamieson and Tim Southee, who have been big players for them in the WTC,” Ganguly told Aaj Tak on eSalaamCricket.
”That’s why I think the England “series win was worth its weight in gold for New Zealand. Their bowling attack had the likes of Matt Henry, Trent Boult came back, Neil Wagner was there. Will Young made a great debut at Edgbaston, he played a really good knock in the 1st innings against a good England attack,” said Ganguly.
However, Ganguly reckoned that while the Test series win against England will give New Zealand a lot of confidence, both teams have to remember that they will begin on the same platform in the World Test Championship final.
He, however, admitted that since the Indian team hasn’t played competitive Test cricket in the last 3 months, it might take them some time to get used to the conditions and the format.
“The England Test series win will give New Zealand a lot of confidence. But New Zealand and India will have to remember that they will begin on the same platform when they take the field for the WTC Final in Southampton. India did not play any warm-up matches, they went to England straight from the IPL so it will take a bit of time for them to settle down to the conditions but I think it will be a great contest because both teams are heavyweights,” said Ganguly.