New Zealand edge Sri Lanka to deny WTC final berth as India through

CHRISTCHURCH: New Zealand’s thrilling last-ball win over dejected Sri Lanka on Monday, propelled last season’s runners-up India into another World Test Championship (WTC) Final, said International Cricket Council (ICC).

Sri Lanka had the opportunity to pip India and join already-qualified Australia in the WTC final but a narrow two-wicket defeat in the first away Test against New Zealand marked the end of Dimuths Karunaratne’s side’s push for the final spot.

After losing the first, Sri Lanka left with the best possible winning percentage of 56%, compared to India’s lowest percentage which is now 57%.

“India’s destructive start to their Test series at home against Australia means their worst possible WTC points percentage is now 57%, assuming there are no penalty points against them for a poor over rate in the fourth Test against Australia in Ahmedabad,” stated ICC in a release.

“Sri Lanka were initially hampered by rain and then unable to bowl out New Zealand on day five of the first Test in Christchurch, meaning Dimuth Karunaratne’s side can now finish with a best possible WTC points percentage of 56% even if they win the second Test,” the statement added.

India’s domination in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy sets up their World Test Championship Final with Australia at The Oval beginning on June 7, with the winner claiming the World Test Championship mace.

India lost the inaugural World Test Championship final against New Zealand in 2021, as Kane Williamson’s men chased down a modest target of 139 in Southampton.

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