The International Cricket Council (ICC), the apex body of cricket, flagged off the ambitious World Test Championship (WTC) in 2019. The aim behind starting WTC was to have a dedicated tournament for the ultimate format, along with reviving the interest of the audience.
Moreover, the bilateral series played between 2 teams also got more context in terms of securing a spot in the final. Now, the participating teams are putting in all their efforts to come on top of their opponents.
After gruelling WTC cycles, the top 2 sides clash in the WTC Final to claim the title of champions of Test cricket. And here are the winners of the ICC World Test Championship.
ICC World Test Championship Winners
2019-21 | New Zealand
After the inaugural 2 year cycle and Covid-19 interruptions, table-toppers India faced off against No. 2 New Zealand in the final. The summit clash also witnessed rain gods playing spoilsport with no play possible on the first day.
After being asked to bat first, India were bowled out for 217 in the first innings as the set batters lost their wickets at crucial points. Later, Indian bowlers restricted the Kiwis to 249, though New Zealand managed to take a vital lead of 32 runs.
India had a chance to score a fighting total in the second innings, but the batters didn’t last long on the pitch. This abysmal performance was reflected on the scoreboard, with India scoring 170 runs and setting a target of 139 for the Blackcaps.
The match went into reserve day, thanks to no play taking place on the first and fourth days. New Zealand chased down the target with 8 wickets in hand and lifted the inaugural WTC mace.
2021-23 | Australia
India made it to their successive WTC final in a row, while Australia made their first appearance by topping the table. A couple of months before the final showdown, India had defeated Australia in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy by 2-1, which put them as the favourites.
India won the toss and elected to field first, but the decision backfired for the Men in Blue. Australia’s ace Test batter Steve Smith and Travis Head brought up their individual hundreds to push their total to 469.
In response, India conceded a lead of 173 as they were skittled out for 296. Later, Australia extended their lead to 443 runs as they scored 270 runs in the second innings.
With that, India were set a huge target of 444, with 4 sessions to go in the match. India ended the fourth day on 164/3, however, it was all but over for them in the first session of the fifth day. Australia thrashed India by a margin of 209 runs to claim the WTC mace.