The World Test Championship (WTC) is all set for a grand finish. The finale of the tournament sees table-toppers India go head to head with New Zealand at the Rose Bowl from June 18 to 22. Cricket fans are expecting nothing less than a fantastic finish to the first edition of the WTC Tournament. There have been many brilliant pieces of cricket during this 2-year WTC cycle. Many players have put in fine performances during this edition.
We look at 6 players who are in the running for the Player of the Tournament award:
#6 Tim Southee
Southee is New Zealand’s leading wicket-taker in the WTC. He has picked 51 wickets from 20 innings at a brilliant average of 20.7. Not just in New Zealand, Southee did well in Australia and Sri Lanka too. The fact that Southee will feature in the finals gives him a golden chance to win the award.
#5 Pat Cummins
Not for nothing is Pat Cummins the number 1 ranked bowler in the world. Cummins is currently the leading wicket-taker in WTC too. It can be argued that Cummins largely played in England and Australia. But take nothing away from the champion bowler. Cummins went wicketless only twice in 28 innings. He picked up 70 wickets at a stunning average of 21.
#4 Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma has by far been the best opener in the World Test Championship. He has also been India’s best batsman in the WTC. Sharma piled up 1030 runs at a brilliant average of 64..4 in the tournament. He played 4 match-winning knocks in the WTC, but his best one came against England. On a rank turner in Chennai, Sharma smashed 161. This knock helped India stay alive in the race for the WTC final.
#3 Marnus Labuschagne
Marnus Labuschagne was the first concussion substitute in the history of Test cricket. He replaced Steve Smith in the 2019 Lord’s Test. Labuschagne has gone from strength to strength. He is currently the leading run-getter in the WTC championship. He has played 13 games scoring 1675 runs with five centuries and nine half-centuries. Labuschagne averages a whopping 72.82 in WTC Tournament. He is currently the third-ranked ICC Test batsman.
#2 Ben Stokes
If there is an ICC tournament expect Ben Stokes to play a starring role. His 135 against Australia at Headingley is widely regarded as one of the best Test innings. Stokes has had a largely wonderful WTC except for the series against India. He has notched up 1334 runs at an average of 46. Stokes piled 4 centuries and 6 half-centuries during the process. He has also picked 34 wickets to go along his runs. He surely is one of the front runners to win the coveted trophy.
#1 Ravichandran Ashwin
Ravichandran Ashwin is one of the key reasons behind India’s dominance in Test cricket in the last 5-6 years. He has been at his absolute best in the WTC Tournament. Ashwin has picked 67 wickets in 13 games. He has a great chance of leapfrogging Pat Cummins as the highest wicket-taker in the championship. He is just 4 adrift of Cummins. Ashwin will feature in the finals and he has a great chance of topping the list. He even scored a series-defining century against England to add to his WTC credentials.