New Zealand keep ICC WTC final hope alive after thrashing Pakistan

New Zealand cricket team. Photo: @BLACKCAPS

New Zealand boosted their hopes of reaching the ICC World Test Championship final after securing a 101-run win against Pakistan in the first Test here on Wednesday.

The Kiwis won 60 points in the ICC WTC standings to keep their dream alive of making it to the final of the mega event even if the second Test match ends in a draw.

The Kiwis will topple Australia to go on the top of the ICC Test Team Rankings but that won't be enough to play the final of WTC as the top two teams in WTC standing will lock horns in the showpiece event. The team rankings are run independently and do not affect the ICC WTC table.

The Kiwis are now third, behind Australia and India in terms of percentage points won, the factor that determines the final placings rather than total points won, following a change to the points system owing to the COVID-19 disruption.

Australia and India are ahead in the points table on that basis. New Zealand, currently on 0.667 percentage points, could go up to 0.700 if they whitewash Pakistan and move up to second depending on the results in the other series Down Under. However, a 1-1 draw would reduce them to 0.600 points.

Australia, who overtook India to the top position after the change in regulations from maximum points to percentage points, are currently on 0.766 after the Boxing Day Test loss on Tuesday.

India is on 0.722 playing their fifth series and is looking to go on top after an all-round display in the second Test. India will play four Test matches in February and will get ample opportunities to improve their tally. Australia now need to pull up their socks if they want to play the final of WTC. The top two sides at the end of the league on percentage points will contest the final.


(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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