Cricket: Michael Vaughan, Alastair Cook predict winner of WTC final between India and New Zealand

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Jun 17, 2021, 02:19 PM(IST)

Cricket: New Zealand seal first away Test series win against England since 1999 Photograph:( AFP )

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Former England captains Alastair Cook and Michael Vaughan have backed New Zealand to win the much-awaited ICC World Test Championship, against India, in Southampton, starting Friday.

Former England captains Alastair Cook and Michael Vaughan have backed New Zealand to win the much-awaited ICC World Test Championship, against India, in Southampton, starting Friday.

Vaughan and Cook agreed that New Zealand are a high-class team and well capable of playing disciplined cricket with both bat and ball for long periods in the longest format of the game.

"I fancy New Zealand. I know I'm going to get absolute pelters on social media for going against India. But the way New Zealand played in the two Tests against England, I think they're going to do it. They are a high-class cricket team - I like every aspect of their game," Vaughan told 'BBC'.

"New Zealand play long periods of disciplined cricket, with bat and ball. They bat with a great maturity and read the situation perfectly.

"If you analyse Test cricket, generally it is the side that are able to cover all the bases the longest that wins, and New Zealand are able to do that because they have a very skillful bowling attack," he added.

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While India are heading into the WTC final without any match practice, England have played a two-Test series against England, winning it 1-0. Cook reckons that New Zealand’s match sharpness will help them get a favourable result in the WTC final.

"New Zealand are going to win. They're two matches further into match-sharpness after the series win against England - they're used to playing under pressure and in English conditions."

"The only thing they've got to deal with is the selection question - and getting the balance of the side right. I hope they go in with Ajaz Patel, the left-arm spinner.

"But that means one of their big four seam bowlers - Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner or Matt Henry - who have done such a good job for them, isn't going to play," he added.

 

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