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ICC World Test Championship will give meaning to every series, says Daniel Vettori


ANI Cricket
Former New Zealand all-rounder Daniel Vettori on Monday said the introduction of the ICC World Test Championship will give meaning to every series.
Vettori said that the World Test Championship is an exciting prospect for cricket. He added that it will have some extra context for multiple teams competing in the series.
"The new ICC World Test Championship is a very exciting prospect for cricket, particularly for the format to have some extra context for multiple teams. Test matches already have plenty of meaning but this gives a little bit more for every Test in a series," ICC quoted Vettori as saying.
ICC World Test Championship was announced last year, with the top nine full member nations -- Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the West Indies -- competing in a total of 71 Test matches across 27 bi-lateral series over two years. The teams will wear names and numbers on the back of their Test jerseys, which is an ICC initiative to help fans connect with players.
The top two teams with most points as of April 30, 2021, will then contest in the WTC final in June 2021 in the UK. Each of the nine teams will play six of the eight possible opponents across a two-year period, with three series at home and as many series away and a total of 120 points up for grab within each series.
The 40-year-old further said the longest format holds a "huge deal" in a player's life. Vettori added that with the World Test Championship, the format can build to something very special.
"It's a format that already means a huge deal to players and the cricket community but now it can build to something very special. When we get the chance to see a Test Championship final played for the very first time, we'll have an opportunity to see how quickly it can capture the imagination of everyone," he said.
"So it's an exciting time for Tests as a whole and New Zealand have a big year to look forward to. New Zealand go to Sri Lanka, India go to the West Indies and there's also the Ashes between England and Australia so there's a lot of exciting cricket to come," Vettori added.
The former New Zealand cricketer said that the contest between Kiwis and Australia will be a fixture to look out for. He also highlighted the return of the Boxing Day Test between the teams for the first time since 1987.
"Australia v New Zealand is always a contest to look out for and it's become a real marquee series for the Black Caps to be involved in. The Boxing Day Test is coming back between the two teams for the first time since 1987 - it's definitely captured the imagination and there are a lot of people talking about it. It's a series people want to be involved in, it's one of the premier events in Test cricket which features a really big crowd," he said.
Vettori said both Australia and New Zealand are evenly matched and have a competitive edge. He added that New Zealand will have big summer as India will tour New Zealand.
"The two teams (Australia and New Zealand) are quite evenly matched, it only emboldens that link and the competitive edge between the sides. Then India will come to New Zealand so it's a big summer ahead for the Black Caps."
"You'll certainly know how far you can go in the Test Championship after you've played those sides and it's a good way of testing yourselves out against some of the biggest teams in Test cricket," he said.
Vettori acknowledged that India have proven itself over the past few years and said both India and New Zealand are well-balanced and there is no department in which they do not click.
"They are both massive series and it's those types of games that you play Test cricket for. New Zealand are always a confident side at home, but India have proven over the past few years that they're a side that travels incredibly well."
"They're a very well-balanced team and there's no department in which they don't click. So it's all set up to be an exciting series and, for New Zealand in particular, a good first 12 months of the Test Championship," he signed off.

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First Published: Jul 29 2019 | 7:22 PM IST

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