ICC WTC Final: Best Combined XI Of India And New Zealand

Updated - 27 Nov 2023, 04:38 PM

ICC WTC Final: Best Combined XI Of India And New Zealand
ICC WTC Final: Best Combined XI Of India And New Zealand

India and New Zealand are set for the ultimate face-off to conclude the inaugural ICC World Test Championship in the final to be played from June 18th in Southampton.

While the Kiwis will have a 2-Test series versus hosts England prior to the mega-clash with India, Virat Kohli’s team will get the opportunity to observe their opponents before their 6-Test UK sojourn commences – the WTC final will be followed by a 5-Test India-England series.

Both India and New Zealand teams are filled with superstar players, and with myriad options to choose from for the grand finale at The Rose Bowl. Here we make the best eleven of both teams combined.

ICC WTC Final: Best Combined XI Of India And New Zealand

Rohit Sharma

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma (Image Credit: Twitter)

Similar to his white-ball career, Rohit Sharma’s Test career has taken a massive spike since he began opening in the longest format as well in 2019. As an opener, Sharma has scored 1030 runs at an average of 64.38 with 4 tons, including a double-ton.

Sharma fared decently in Australia and was also promoted as the deputy to interim skipper, Ajinkya Rahane. It will be, though, a completely different challenge when the ball moves sideways in English conditions.

Tom Latham

Tom Latham
Tom Latham (Image Credit: Twitter)

Tom Latham was New Zealand’s second-highest run-scorer in the WTC cycle – behind only Kane Williamson. The left-hander has batted almost all of his career as an opener – 95 innings at the top and just 2 innings at number 4 – and averages 42.86. He has been a reliable batsman for the Kiwis at the top for providing them solid starts.

Kane Williamson (C)

Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson (Image Credit: Twitter)

Kane Williamson has scored runs for fun in the last home season: an 89 versus India; 2 double hundreds and a hundred against Pakistan and West Indies. The New Zealand captain can hold the fort and score briskly as well, according to the situation.

He has been a thorn in the flesh for bowling attacks and is one of the best, if not the best, batsmen in the world. In the 9 matches of the WTC he played in, Williamson amassed 817 runs at 58.35. Williamson is also chosen as the skipper of the side for his shrewdness.

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. Image Source: Reuters

Virat Kohli is, arguably, the best batsman, not just of this generation, but of all time. While he made be suffering a century drought, with his last three-figure score coming in November 2019, the Indian captain isn’t short on runs; he has been scoring fifties regularly but just isn’t able to convert it into a big knock.

Kohli has accumulated 877 runs at 43.85 in the WTC cycle, and can end his century rut anytime soon – an occasion such as the WTC final would be fitting to his greatness.

Ajinkya Rahane

Ajinkya Rahane
Ajinkya Rahane scores a century at the MCG. Image-Getty.

Ajinkya Rahane is currently India’s leading run-scorer of the WTC with 1095 at an average of 43.80. He scored three centuries during this period, with the one at Melbourne against Australia being the most memorable and significant.

While his numbers in the last home series versus England doesn’t reflect his high-class, his part record, especially in overseas conditions, where he averages more than at home, is admirable.

Rishabh Pant(wk)

Rishabh Pant
Rishabh Pant (Image Credit: Twitter)

Rishabh Pant was the clear choice for the wicket-keeper’s slot over BJ Watling. His heroics against Australia have made Pant a legend, a folklore hero, who helped India etch a memorable triumph Down Under.

He continued his superb form at home against England, as well as made marked improvements in his wicket-keeping. In the last couple of series, the left-hander averages 60.44, and he has cemented his place across the three formats in the Indian team.

Ravindra Jadeja

Ravindra Jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja. Image Credits: Getty

Ravindra Jadeja is one of the best all-rounders in the world and is the clear choice over the inexperienced Daryl Mitchell, who, though, has had a good start to his Test career, and the out of form and fitness Colin de Grandhomme in this eleven.

Apart from his consistent bowling and elite fielding abilities, Jadeja’s remarkable improvement in his batting has taken his stature to a higher level and put him right in line with Ben Stokes and Jason Holder. In the WTC cycle, the southpaw has averaged 58.62 with the bat, and 28.67 with the ball.

Ravichandran Ashwin

Ravichandran Ashwin
Ravichandran Ashwin (Image Credit: Twitter)

Ravichandran Ashwin is India’s most successful bowler in the WTC cycle with 67 wickets at an outstanding average of 20.88. He has regained his batting touch as well, as suggested by his brilliant hundred in Chennai against England. With their form and skills, Ashwin and Jadeja both could be played together in the eleven, even in overseas conditions.

Kyle Jamieson

Kyle Jamieson
Kyle Jamieson (Image Credit: Twitter)

The tallest New Zealand Test cricketer ever, Kyle Jamieson has made an astonishing start to his Test career. The right-hander has snared 36 wickets in 6 Tests at a mind-blowing average of 13.27.

Down the order Jamieson offers plenty of support with the bat as well – he averages 56.50 with the bat! While he has been a terrific first change and second change pacer, there could be only little doubt over if his prowess with the new ball as well.

Jasprit Bumrah

India, Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah (Image Credit: Twitter)

In a quick time, Jasprit Bumrah has become the leader of India’s pacer attack. The speedster has taken 83 wickets in 19 Tests at 22.10. Arguably the best fast bowler in the world, Bumrah’s has the ability to pick wickets even without much assistance from the surface; in helping conditions, the seamer is menacing and can get the better of any batsman. Bumrah can swing with the new ball, and extract reverse swing with the old ball as well.

Trent Boult

Trent Boult
Trent Boult (Image Credit: Twitter)

Although Trent Boult has a worse average than all of Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Neil Wagner, and Tim Southee in the WTC, none of them possess the combination of qualities which he does: left-arm angle with the most prominent swing bowling capabilities.

Boult has been the talisman bowler of New Zealand for plenty of years now. Very few left-hand seamers in the world can move the ball into the right-hander – and angle it away, too – as Boult does.

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ICC World Test Championship (WTC) India vs New Zealand Jasprit Bumrah Rohit Sharma Virat Kohli