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Monday, July 26, 2021

India vs New Zealand WTC Final Day 1: Play called off due to rain

India vs New Zealand (IND vs NZ) WTC Final Test: Day 1 of the India vs New Zealand World Test Championship final was called off without a ball being bowled.

By: Sports Desk |
Updated: June 19, 2021 1:07:33 pm

India vs New Zealand (IND vs NZ) WTC Final Test:  There was no play possible on the first day of the World Test Championship final between India and New Zealand in Southampton on Friday owing to incessant rain. The match was scheduled to start at 3pm (IST) but the weather ensured that the pitch at the Ageas Bowl was covered and the toss was delayed. Day 2 will begin at 2:30 pm IST.

The ICC has kept a reserve day to make up for time lost because of inclement weather. Rain has been forecast in Southampton for most part of the inaugural title clash in the longest format. India will start as favorites because of the greater options at their disposal, but will go in under prepared. New Zealand warmed up well in the two-Test series against England and dominated both, winning the second match inside four days.

India Playing XI: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah

Match EndedICC World Test Championship, 2021 - Final


217 (92.1) u0026 170 (73.0)

New Zealand

249 (99.2) u0026 140/2 (45.5)
Match Ended ( Day 6 - Final )
New Zealand beat India by 8 wickets

Live Blog

India vs New Zealand WTC Final Day 1:

19:26 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Early start on Day 2

Rain the runaway winner on Day 1 in Southampton, even as the skies have let up in St Lucia and Bristol. We will have an early start tomorrow, at 2:30 pm IST, with 98 overs scheduled to be bowled. Also, remember, since the toss has not been done yet, India could still change their playing XI.

19:16 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Day 1 called off

'UPDATE - Unfortunately, play on Day 1 has been called off due to rains. 10.30 AM local time start tomorrow.' says a BCCI update.

19:06 (IST)18 Jun 2021

If you got your hopes high from the last hour of clear skies, prepare to shed them now. That familiar cricket villain is back in Southampton, thus putting paid to the 7:30 inspection. It's the villain's special epsiode day everywhere in the world today though. West Indies and South Africa are about to play their second Test today, in St Lucia, where the special guest is also rain! In Bristol, where the Indian women are taking on England women, guess who the starring role has gone to. Rain of course, with a strong supporting role from an unbeaten Shafali Verma.

18:36 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Official inspection at 7:30 pm IST

An official update from the middle that is not bad news! There has been no rain for close to an hour now. An official inspection of the playing conditions has been scheduled at 7:30 pm IST. If the rain holds off for another hour, dare we say it, we can begin Day 1 in Southampton.

18:20 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Dry spell in Southampton, rain in Bristol

In Southampton, there's been no rain for half an hour. The pitch remains covered while a Super Sopper goes about its business in the outfield. Some of the players and staff also seen taking walks around the field. In a twist of fate, rain has arrived in Bristol and the start of the second session has been delayed. 

18:03 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Rain stops

It's time for that message of hope again - the rains have retreated again. Around a 100 miles to the northwest, in Bristol, the other Indian team, meanwhile, has been asked to follow on. Shafali Verma is doing what she does best - counter-attack - even as all eyes stay fixed on the clouds in Southampton, where no ball has been bowled.

17:32 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Still waiting for toss

The outfield shows plenty of signs of being unfit for play at the moment even as the rain comes in patches. No ball, and not even the toss, has been possible till now. 

17:08 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Rain starts again

And the rain starts again, with the rain gods living up to the topsy turvy nature of the game the WTC final was supposed to be. With time officially into the Lunch hour session, no play has been possible, and with rain restarting, we are sure not to get the 2nd session started in time either.

16:45 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Rain stops

Some good news. The rain has stopped in Southampton. Some ray of hope in the gloom of the clouds. Could we have the ground ready for some action in the second session maybe?

16:07 (IST)18 Jun 2021
India’s return to Southampton with a difference

The 2018 Test series in England was where the seeds of revival were planted, that has put India on the cusp of glory. There were misgivings in the team, largely related to the direction and the attitude that the management sought – and what has become a norm in three years hence. A focus on fitness, a tendency to play horses for courses, a willingness to drop players on a whiff of non-performance. Some like Vijay, Dinesh Karthik, and eventually Dhawan were staring at the end of their Test careers. READ MORE

15:46 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Not a confident start by India

Meanwhile, play is underway at Bristol in the Test between England and India. Harmanpreet Kaur (4*) and Deepti Sharma (yet to score) began at the crease with the visitors five down and trailing by 209. Sophie Ecclestone strikes with her first ball of the day! It's the big wicket of Harmanpreet Kaur as England successfully review for lbw - India 187/6

15:28 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Weather update: Rain continues to play spoilsport

It started raining in Southampton on Thursday afternoon and Friday's coin toss could not take place because of the drizzle which ensured the square remained under cover. "The toss has been delayed and there will be no play in the opening session," the governing International Cricket Council (ICC) tweeted. The organisers have allocated a reserve day to make up for any lost time during the regular days of the match. The one-off match marks the culmination of a two-year cycle of the inaugural WTC, launched in 2019 to create a pinnacle event for Test cricket.

14:42 (IST)18 Jun 2021
The wait continues
14:20 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Toss delayed

Bad news from Southampton. Toss for WTC Final is delayed and there will be no play in the first session of Day 1.

14:13 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Weather Update: Raining heavily

It is pouring down in Southampton with one hour to go for the final ​to begin.In case of a no-result, the Test Championship mace will be shared. Too early to speculate right now. 100% precipitation, 100% humidity.

14:01 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Kohli on playing the 'nice guys' of cricket

For the Indian captain and his team, the WTC final is like their Test debuts as young players trying to come up the ranks. "If you are deciding Test cricket on the basis of one game over a period of five days, that's not the reality or the truth. It's not going to reflect anything for people who understand the game and know what exactly has gone on in the last four to five years," Kohli said on the eve of the big final when asked if he is bothered by his team's record of losing key ICC games. "If you look back at history and look at what has gone wrong on a given day, you realise you are only playing a sport. If we win this game, cricket doesn't stop for us and if we lose this game, cricket doesn't stop for us," Kohli, gave one of his signature, long and winding answer.

13:39 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Ideal to bat first in seaming conditions: Sourav Ganguly

Up against the “best New Zealand” side of the past 35 years, India should opt to bat first even if the conditions are overcast as that is what has worked best for the side during overseas tours, feels BCCI President and former captain Sourav Ganguly. “If you dig into the record books and see India’s best overseas performances (save 2021 Australia), we have always won matches when we have batted first. It’s about a choice whether you want to face the pressure first up in adverse conditions or wait for the fourth innings,” Ganguly told ‘Aaj Tak’.

13:21 (IST)18 Jun 2021
‘Best Test team in international cricket cannot be decided over 5 days’

India captain Virat Kohli was not trying to undermine the World Test Championship final with this statement.By calling the WTC final “just another game of cricket,” Kohli, who is yet to win an ICC title as skipper, was only trying to play down the hype of the duel, while at the same time attempting to re-assert the legacy of his team. READ MORE

13:07 (IST)18 Jun 2021
Sachin Tendulkar details the art and nuance of spin bowling in rainy windy England

India has gone with two spinners for the World Test Championship final at Southampton that is likely to see several rain breaks. With the forecast predicting frequent showers all through the match, batting legend Sachin Tendulkar talks to the Indian Express about the tactics and skills needed to counter constantly changing overhead conditions. READ HERE

12:53 (IST)18 Jun 2021
India Playing XI

India is playing spinners Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin in a five-man bowling attack against New Zealand in the world test championship final starting on Friday. India surprised by announcing its team a day early on Thursday, rather than wait as long as possible to try and confirm the weather forecast, which is for poor conditions at the spin-friendly Rose Bowl.

India has gone with the five expected batsmen plus wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant, but the five bowlers are playing together for the first time. Ashwin, the world's best offspinner, and Jadeja, the world's best left-arm spinner, join right-arm quicks Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami. Jadeja and Shami missed the last series against England at home because of respective thumb and elbow injuries.

New Zealand will wait until the toss to reveal its side.


India: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli(c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant(w), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Hanuma Vihari, Umesh Yadav, Wriddhiman Saha

New Zealand: Tom Latham, Devon Conway, Kane Williamson(c), Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling(w), Colin de Grandhomme, Ajaz Patel, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner, Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, Matt Henry, Will Young, Tom Blundell

  • The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.