“It is the bowlers who win you the Test matches” says Gautam Gambhir
India is all set to fight for the World Test Championship cup against New Zealand. The final match of the championship is going to take place in Ageas Bowl in Southampton, England on Friday. The inaugural WTC title is going to play on neutral ground but that does not diminish the enthusiasm of the fans and the heat of the competition. Fans and experts have already started to choose their favorite players and favorite team and a former Indian player seems to think that New Zealand will have an edge over India. This legendary cricketer is Gautam Gambhir and his presumption has solid ground. “It is the bowlers who win you the Test matches” says Gautam Gambhir.
Gambhir thinks that the lack of practice might put India in a weaker spot. On the other hand, the Kane Williamson-led team has already proved its mettle in a two-match series against England. New Zealand won the series by winning the second test at Birmingham by 8 wickets.
Though Gambhir feels that it is not fair to predict favorites “in the one-off final” but New Zealand is bound to have an edge over India because they have played two Test matches against England which have not only given them practice but have also boosted their morale as they won the series.
Intra-squad matches are not enough
The Indian team is in the opposite zone. The team has been on a break as the Indian Premier League 2021 was postponed due to the pandemic. The last match that they played was played on home ground against England in March. It has been a long gap. Though the team played an intra-squad simulation match to prepare for the WTC final, but according to Gambhir, this is not enough and the team needed real match practice.
Gambhir said, “You can play as many intra-squad matches, but there is no substitute to match practice.”
Indian bowling attack is at its finest
Even though Gambhir believes that New Zealand is going to have an upper hand in the WTC final but this does not stop him from believing in the charisma of Indian bowlers. He believes that this kind of bowling attack “can take 20 wickets on any track”. He also said that according to him “it’s the bowlers who win you a Test match.” He believes that the Indian bowling attack is at its fines for this final and they would easily take 20 wickets and would be able to “trouble any team at any surface”.
One more aspect that is a no-no for the legend. He does not want the match to end in a draw. It should be a clear win as per Gambhir. He said that both the teams should go for a win. Playing for a draw is only a waste as “it is not a bilateral series”.