Kohli wants best-of-three WTC final, Williamson backs one-off Test

Southampton, Jun 24 (IANS): Indian team skipper Virat Kohli and his New Zealand counterpart Kane Williamson are in disagreement over a one-off World Test Championship (WTC) final. While Kohli wants a series of three Test matches to decide a WTC final winner, Williamson said the "one-off factor" brings excitement like in finals of other formats.

India was on Wednesday beaten by New Zealand by eight wickets in the inaugural WTC final, a one-off event.

"Look, firstly I am not in absolute agreement of deciding the best Test side over the course of one game, to be very honest. If it is a Test series, it has to be a test of character over three Tests," said Kohli in the post-match press conference.

"Which team has the ability to come back into the series (should be a factor) ... It can't just be [about] pressure applied over two days of good cricket and you suddenly are not a good Test side anymore. I don't believe in that," said Kohli further.

The 32-year-old said that the winner of the two-year-long WTC schedule has to be decided through the hard grind and not just by winning a one-off Test.

"I think it has to be a hard grind and it needs to be certainly worked out in the future to really [decide the winner] at the end of three matches. There are efforts, ups and downs, situations changing throughout the course of the series. [There has to be] A chance to rectify the things that have gone wrong in the first game. Then you really see who is a better side in a three-match series. That will be a good measure of how things really are," said Kohli and also added that the Indian team has done well over the last 3-4 years and not just over the last 18 months.

"We understand what we have done as a Test side over the last three-four years and not just in the last 18 months. [It is] Not a measure of ability and potential we have had over the last so many years," he added.

Williamson, however, disagreed with this.

"I suppose the exciting part of a final is that anything can happen. We know how fickle cricket is and we have seen in other competitions, other World Cups and all other bits and pieces. The one-off factor brings a unique dynamic which does make it exciting," said the Kiwis skipper who helped New Zealand lift an ICC title after two successive losses in the final of the 50-over World Cup, in 2015 and 2019.

He said that the big challenge would be to schedule a three-match WTC final amid a lot of Test matches going around.

"On any given day, anything can happen. I suppose there are arguments for both sides and the challenge would be scheduling that [three-match WTC] series amongst a lot of cricket that is already on. The more cricket you have in a series, the more you find out and the more you reveal. But it was an exciting game. It was the first time, both teams were fully geared up for it and it was a brilliant game of cricket," said Williamson.


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