Former Indian skipper, Sourav Ganguly, who is serving as the BCCI president is hoping that the first-ever World Test Championship trophy comes to India with the Indian team defeating New Zealand in the final of the historic match, starting June 18 in Southampton. Ganguly said India’s victory in Australia earlier this year will be huge confidence when they step onto the field in Southampton.
During an exclusive interview with AajTak, Sourav Ganguly said, “This is a very big moment for any cricketer because a final of a Test Championship is being played for the first time. Virat Kohli will be very happy and proud that he will be leading the team in the WTC Final. This team has played very good cricket over the last 2 years which is why they are in the final. I believe this team will enter the Ageas Bowl Stadium in Southampton with a different level of confidence.”
Meanwhile, Saurav Ganguly also lauded Kane Williamson’s New Zealand side, saying they have been one of the most consistent sides, especially in ICC tournaments in the past. The Kiwis displaced India from the top of the ICC Test rankings after beating England 1-0.
Describing the same, Sourav Ganguly said, “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.”
He further added, “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.”
However, the former Indian skipper also said that both teams have to remember that they would be starting on an even footing in the WTC final. The match will be played at the Ageas Bowl from Friday.
Sourav Ganguly elaborated, “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.”