ICC WTC Final 2021: Why India didn't change its playing XI despite rainy weather? Virat Kohli explains
New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: The final of the World Test Championship started on Saturday a day after the first day of the final was washed out due to rain in Southampton. New Zealand captain Kane Williamson won the toss and elected to bowl first at the Ageas Bowl. New Zealand is playing with five pacers, while India stuck to the playing XI which was decided on Thursday including two spinners -- Ravindra Jadeja and R Ashwin.
Before the toss, it was speculated that India will change its playing XI due to the windy weather conditions and include another pacer in the playing XI. However, the team management decided to play the World Test Championship final with two spinners and India Virat Kohli explained why the decision was made.
According to Kohli, the playing XI of team India is perfectly balanced and prepared for any weather conditions. Kohli said that our team's strength is batting and runs on the board are an advantage in a big final like this.
"We would've probably bowled first as well. But runs on the board has been our strength. In a big final, runs on the board, however many, are an advantage. As you saw the makeup of our side, the balance is such that we prepare for any conditions. We've been performing really well in Test cricket. For us this is just a Test match we have to be professional in, have to follow our processes," Kohli said at the toss.
Meanwhile, New Zealand captain, Kane Williamson said that he is expecting the pitch to remain as it is and is hoping to get an advantage of playing five pacers.
"We'll bowl first. Conditions, with the weather around, hopefully we can make the most of it. Saying that, wicket will be consistent throughout the game going by the cool weather. Have gone for four frontline seamers. No spinner. Great occasion and great challenge against the best team in the world," the New Zealand skipper said.
"First time a WTC final, guys are really excited. A big player for us and a real leader within our group (Watling). A great occasion for him to play his last game. Great to be in this position. Two years trying to qualify - for us, we're fortunate to be here," Williamson added.
India (Playing XI): Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli(c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant(w), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah
New Zealand (Playing XI): Tom Latham, Devon Conway, Kane Williamson(c), Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling(w), Colin de Grandhomme, Kyle Jamieson, Neil Wagner, Tim Southee, Trent Boult
Posted By: Talibuddin Khan