Former England captain David Gower praised both Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson. David Gower’s comments are of special significance as it comes less than two weeks before India and New Zealand face off in the inaugural World Test Championship final at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton on June 18.
David Gower: WTC Final Will Be A Proper Test Match For Both Captains Are Great Batsmen And Teams Are Competitive Enough
It will be a big occasion for both Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson as the duo would walk out to lead India and New Zealand respectively in the WTC final.
“We know there are two of the greatest batsmen in the world at the moment that are going to be involved in Virat and in Kane Williamson. You’ve got two very competitive teams. So, it makes for what I call a proper Test match,” David Gower told Timesofindia.com.
David Gower, who represented England in 117 Tests and 114 ODIs, said both India and New Zealand deserved to be in the finals. The former left-hander, who was known for his grace and class while batting in the middle of the crease, said he is expecting a ‘proper Test match’ between two sides of the highest quality.
“First of all, they both deserve to be there. We’ve got a final between two very good teams. Knowing the Southampton ground as I do, I would expect it to be a proper game, a proper Test match. By which I mean that whenever people talk about conditions for Test matches, you want something that gives something for the bowlers, something for a batsman, or something for the spinner. And that’s the template for all matches. And I think the pitch at Southampton will most likely offer that,” said David Gower.
Kane Williamson has scored 7,129 runs from 84 Tests with the best score of 251. In fact, Kane Williamson has a better Test average than Indian counterpart skipper Virat Kohli (53.6). He owns 24 tons and four double-centuries. Virat Kohli has amassed 7,490 runs from 91 Tests averaging 52.38 with the highest of unbeaten 254. He has 27 tons including 7 double tons.
David Gower: Pitch Will Give Both Teams An Opportunity To Use All Aspects Or Facets Aiding Spinners And Pacers
Talking about the Ageas Bowl pitch, David Gower said it will be a surface that will offer something for the batsmen, seamers, and also the spinners as the game progresses.
“I think they’ll try and prepare a pitch which will reflect the status of the game and will give both teams an opportunity to use all aspects or facets. So I think the fact that, for instance, India just won this last series largely (due to) spin. But we know that when conditions are different, there are some very good Indian pace bowlers (as well). So, you’ve got your three or four perfectly good seam bowlers, and if there’s a bit of help they will do a good job,” he said.
Virat Kohli-led India’s batsmen haven’t quite proved themselves yet against the swinging ball and their techniques were exposed on the New Zealand tour in 2020. Meanwhile, the Kiwi pace attack of Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, and Neil Wagner has time and again displayed its ability to extract any purchase from the pitch and would be raring to do the same at Southampton.
If there are no injury concerns, the Indian pace troika that is expected to be in the playing XI for the clash starting June 18 would be Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, and Mohammed Shami.