Former Team India pacer Ajit Agarkar spoke on the much-awaited ICC World Test Championship (WTC) final between India and New Zealand. He discussed how New Zealand has shed the underdog tag. The Indian side shouldn’t underestimate them at the WTC final.
Team India will face the Kiwis in the WTC Final at Ageas Bowl in Southampton from June 18-22. Team India are scheduled to arrive in the UK on June 3 after serving their 14-day bio-secure quarantine in India.
Agarkar on WTC Final:
Ajit Agarkar in a recent chat with a sports channel weighed in on the much-awaited and first World Test Championship final which will be played between India and New Zealand
“I hope not. I don`t think the Indian team would be guilty to underestimate them (The Kiwis). I think the underdog tag has gone away from New Zealand. Every ICC tournament you look at – okay, this is the first of its kind, Test championship – every ICC tournament, whether it`s the T20 World Cup, the Champions Trophy, the World Cup; they always turn up, they`re always there in the thereabout,” Agarkar said.
“If not the finals, then in the quarterfinals or the semi-finals. And that`s a testament to their consistency. So, the underdog tag should go. Yes, there are, perhaps bigger names in some of the other teams and that`s why you count them as favourites. So, I don`t think India will be underestimating them. They beat India comprehensively well when India toured New Zealand and the conditions are likely to be very similar to what India got in New Zealand. So, India will have to play well to beat New Zealand in this contest,” Agarkar added.
There will be four more editions of World Test Championship in the next eight year cycle between 2023-2031. The board believes that World Test Championship has given a context to Test cricket and will help in popularising the traditional format among younger generation.