Team India misses out AGAIN … !!!!!

WTC Final: Virat Kohli Suffers Third Loss As India Captain In ICC  Tournament Knockout Matches After Defeat To New Zealand | Cricket News

Well … what a hell of a test match … wasn’t it ? No one actually believed that the match will be yielding a result but still the game had all the three options open till the final day. Unfortunately, the results didn’t came in our favour but our journey throughout this WTC should be appreciated.

Definitely, it feels disheartening when you continuously miss out on big trophies at the last moment after playing so well but we have to move forward and of course, praise and admire New Zealand. So, let’s look at the whole match with complete details and analysis, what went wrong for us and how can we improve upon it.

The Final Stage :

Interestingly, both INDIA and NEW ZEALAND had reached the finals after defeating England only in their respective last series, though NZ defeated ENG in ENG, giving them the much needed confidence, match practice and mental preparedness (one of their match was also continuously rain-affected). On the other hand, India last played an international series back in march and IPL in April. One more notable point here was NZ defeated ENG twice during this WTC cycle, but, not even once was the series counted in the WTC table (because only 6 series can be counted inside the WTC cycle). So, ultimately the stage was set for the final showdown between the top 2 Test teams in the world led by two great leaders and also two of the greatest batsmen of this generation.

WTC Final 2021, New Zealand Vs India: Day 1 Washed Out, Reserve Day To Come  In Force - Highlights

NZ Wins the Toss

Bad luck in the toss continues for our captain and NZ skipper KANE WILLIAMSON won the toss and making the most out of his luck decided to field first. Day 1 was a complete washout, so some moisture was expected on the wicket and batting was expected to be difficult. Interestingly, while NZ went with all four pacers, without any spinner, India opted to go in with both JADEJA and ASHWIN. So, both teams were going with their respective strengths.

As expected, the ball was swinging very well on the wicket, but batting didn’t look unplayable. Both ROHIT and GILL looked steady and gave a solid start staying more than 20 overs on the crease after which they got out in quick succession. PUJARA spent some time on the crease but fell prey to BOULT’s angling delivery. After that, it was a classic display of test cricket batting. Our captain and vice-captain played some serious test knocks. VIRAT in particular looked too elegant with his footwork and defences.

INDIA stays Below Par

Here I would say, though I am not blabbering, that continuous rains did affect Indian batting.  Firstly, not just it continuously dwindled the concentration of batsmen but also because of it, we got to play lesser overs on that day, which meant we also scored lesser runs that day. Had, it been an undisturbed day, India would have scored much more and VIRAT would have been well past his fifty on that day only. But, when they came the next day, it meant adjusting and settling down on the wicket all over again. Eventually, VIRAT got out on 44 off 132 deliveries.

RAHANE looked a bit uncomfortable though but still managed to top-score with 49, getting out with a silly shot (a fielder was just placed for him right here). After that JADEJA and ASHWIN showed some resistance and took INDIA past 200. PANT on whom expectations were quite high, got out on a bad shot. The score should have been well past 250, no doubt in that, but our Tailenders fell like a pack of cards. So, 217 was the final score. Day 4 too was a washout, and it seemed we are not going to get a result, but as HARSHA BHOGLE highlighted, the remaining time was enough for a result.

ICC WTC Final: Virat Kohli plays an elegant cover drive

INDIA forces a Comeback against a steady looking NZ

NZ too got on to a steady start guided by both LATHAM and CONWAY. The first wicket fell only after the score was past 70 and by the time day ended, NZ was well poised at 104/2. The next day, it was pretty obvious that India needed wickets desperately. But, we didn’t get any in the first hour, but just after that SHAMI gave us a breakthrough picking the dangerous-looking TAYLOR. It was followed by ISHANT picking NICHOLAS and SHAMI removing WATLING. India was back in the game with a bang.

WILLIAMSON was solid as a rock, playing at a rate of around 20, he never for once looked in a hurry. GRANDHOMME was removed early and after a while, WILLIAMSON too got out on 49. But JAMIESON and SOUTHEE contributed some headache (for us) and much-needed (for NZ) runs, due to which NZ ended its innings at 249 and it was at least 20 runs too many. Now, INDIA needed to focus on giving a target of 200 plus runs at least. Fortunately, Day 5 and Day 6 (Reserve Day) had very clear weather.

WTC Final: Have always been an attacking bowler, says Shami - Sportstar

INDIA disappoints wasting all the hard work

INDIA had to spend the difficult last hour of the day. GILL got out early this time but ROHIT looked good and played some good shots. SHUBHMAN too is pretty out-of-form after the AUS tour, but it’s just his ‘footwork being late’ mainly. ROHIT got out in one of the unluckiest ways possible. Now, VIRAT stepped in when just 15 minutes were left of the day. He could have easily sent a night-watchman, but he is after all CAPTAIN FEARLESS. INDIA ended the day at 64/2 and an uphill task awaited VIRAT and Company on the Final Day of the Final.

Unfortunately, none of the heroics came off as both PUJARA and KOHLI were back in the pavilion within half an hour. RAHANE steadied the ship, despite looking rusty but got out soon. Here, regarding PUJARA I would agree with DALE STEYN’s statement that some part of his run-scoring game has got submerged, if not lost. RAHANE too has to work on his consistency seriously. (will talk about VIRAT in detail afterwards). Now, PANT had a big task on hand, he was able to defend and sustain the dangerous attack, but I am not able to figure out why was he trying to hit almost every ball. Such a tense situation required him to ‘tweak’ his approach if not overhaul. As a result, despite being well set at 41, he got out playing a bad rash shot.

JADEJA and ASHWIN too instead of spending more time on the crease focused more on playing the shots. Now, there is nothing wrong with being aggressive, but there is a way of doing that. People forget that, in a tough bowling wicket, a solid defence is also an attack on the bowler’s ego. As a result, the 200+ target was a distant dream, our whole team was wrapped up at 170, giving a meagre target of 139 for NZ. The fact that 53 overs were left, the most probable option two days back, looked an impossibility. Here, we need to keep in mind that had INDIA sustained not much but just 10 more overs, the target would have been something around 160 in 40 odd overs and that would not at all have been easy and we would have been on the safe side.

WTC Final: It was a real battle for Kane Williamson - Nasser Hussain on Day  5 attrition battle - Sports News
Pleased to keep things in balance against quality Indian side: Jamieson |  Cricket - Hindustan Times

NZ show the much-needed resilience and create History

NZ started cautiously against our fiery bowling atttack. Here, it needs to be mentioned that BUMRAH looked completely off-colour, being wicketless in both innings that too on a good wicket. it is a cause of worry for us. ASHWIN gave us the first breakthrough and then the second as welland NZ were tensed at 46/2. Just then an appeal was made against WILLIAMSON and was also given out, but DRS saved him just by a little distance. Had that been out, history could have been different. After that it was a complete KANETASTIC display of KANESISTENCY.

The way WILLIAMSON soaked all the pressure, that too showcasing a perfectmix of calmness and agression, was just Legendaryin my view. He was very well supported by TAYLOR who eventually also scored the winning runs. The history was made and NZ were finally the CHAMPIONS. INDIA as unfortunately just the second-best. Though, I too favoured two spinners but now I think that was a wrong decision. A SIRAJ omplementing SHAMI would have been a deadly and unplayable combination for NZ, keeping in mind they were struggling at one point.

New Zealand beat India New Zealand won by 8 wickets - India vs New Zealand,  ICC World Test Championship, Final Match Summary, Report |
WTC final: New Zealand crowned champs with 8-wicket win over India |  Cricket - Hindustan Times

An Appreciation Post for NEW ZEALAND

New Zealand … a small country with just 50 lakh population. This team was struggling quite a time back, both in terms of their game as well as in terms of their cricket boards. Not just their system was reformed but now talents now being scoutred from as basic as from school level. In 2013, they got all out at 45 against South Africa. Their skipper BREANON MCCULLUM called the whole team and said – “Is this what we want our fans back at home to see ? ….. We have to change our approach if we want the public support … and play OUR brand of cricket with everything we’ve got.” The restas they say is history.

Not only, NZ reached the finals of 2015 and 2019 WC, but the way their standard has risen in Test cricket is just inspirational. Here, credit will also go to BAZZ in my opinion, who actually the platfom over which all these players are perorming. They have now got a  gem of a leader in WILLIAMSON. Also, the way this teams plays, is somethi9ng eveery team should take inspiration. There is no doubt that the better team won, and they thoroughly deserved it. All the best folks … looking forward for more stiff games on the field.


Williamson will bring his own style to captaincy | RNZ News

Points to ponder over for INDIA

  1. MIDDLE ORDER : As I said above, our two oldguards PUJARA and RAHANE need to be amongst teh top scorers soon, that too on a consistent basis. Also, keeping in mind that this couldwell be their last WTC (2021-23), we should also give chances and grrom to other players like VIHARI and RAHUL.
  2. MATCH PRACTICE : VIRAT too accepted that they didn’t had match practice as they weren’t given warm-up matches despite they asking for it. BCCI need to make sure that IND gets sufficient match practice and practice games, especially before an one-off game like this. We clearly lacked teh rhythm in batting, and this is notanything surprising, because I am sure they will getthe rhythm as they get more practice.
  3. TAIL : As long as we don’t cure our DISEASE of struggling against the tailenders, we can expect such results many more times. I have observed this repeatedly that we get defensive, instead of being more aggressive, as soon as the tail arrives. In comparison, our tail just falls down like a pack of cards, and are not evn able to just stay on the wicket. This has already costusmany more crucial matches and a specific preparatio needs to be done in this regard.
  4. KNOCKOUTS : Now, that was our 6th consecutive defeat in the knockouts of the world stage. So, what is it pressingus down everytime? Actually, it is just a matter of time. We have the amunition, we have the skill, or else how would have we reached in the knockouts soconsistently. All we need is just breaching the line once and after that, it will be a regular affair for us.
  5. VIRAT KOHLI : I know it’s hard on him, but the level he has set for him, the team needed more from him. Here, I would not diagree with IAN BELL that his second innings dismissal was less like 2018 and more than 2014. He has been out of big runs for around 2 years now. Also, we have to admit the fact that he has not performed the way we expect from him in the knockouts. So, with the ENG tour knocking at our doors, there can’t be a better opportunity than this for our Captain to break out all the barriers.
World Test Championship (WTC) Final: “This isn't just a team. It's a family”  - Virat Kohli shares message after loss to Kiwis


I think I have highlighted the shortcomings that we had, and none of them is so serious that can be controlled. And yes, as I said, let’s get over it now. I mean, the players didn’t even reach back to their hotels, before people started abusing them. Just tell me, can you forget the Historic victory Down Under just like this? All the blows on the body and playing in pain are worth nothing? Does all the hard work the team went through to reach the finals was worth this abuse only? Keep in mind that even teams like AUS and ENG failed to do so and also keep in mind that we are the No. 1 Test side in the world for the last 5 years.

Also, tell me the fact, NZ lost two WC finals, was WILLIAMSON abused even once back at home? Even if he had lost this WTC final, he wouldn’t have been, instead, we would have surely been there appreciating their ‘smile after loss’ and bad luck. Why we Indians are so caring for other teams but not for our own team. Are the players feeling very happy after the loss? I hate saying this, but we are the WORST ever fanbase in the world. If you can’t stand with your team when it has lost, you are just like a parent abandoning a disabled child.

At last, I would say that I have full faith in my captain as well as on my team (don’t even think of changing the captain). You have made us proud and however hard you try, results don’t go your way every day. Just go for the break from Bubble’ and return with a fresh mind. Have adequate match practice, believe in your group and also be ready to take some hard decisions if required. The long ENG series awaits us, which also kick-starts our campaign for the next cycle of WORLD TEST CHAMPIONSHIP. So, all the best …..




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