Cricket fans look forward to long-awaited World Test match championship that provide context to five-day cricket. The men’s Future Tours Programme (FTP) released by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Wednesday 20 June that has provided the details of the inaugural ICC World Test Championship.
The tournament, is established with the aim of bringing more context to bilateral Test cricket. The tournament will be played from July 15 2019 to April 30 2021.
The nine top-ranked sides in the world will compete in the tournament, with each side playing six series on a home-and-away basis against mutually selected opponents in the two-year cycle.
The tournament was started after the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, with the Ashes in England to kick-start the tournament.
“Together with other member countries we are confident that this will grow interest in the international game – and our team is very much looking forward to launching the World Test Championship with our 2019 Ashes series in England,” said James Sutherland, the Cricket Australia Chief Executive.Tweet
Even as the Ashes mark the tournament’s launch, the West Indies are set to tour India, and New Zealand host Sri Lanka, both in July, making for a dramatic start to the new tournament.
The final league game will be played in April 2021, with the West Indies set to travel to Sri Lanka for a two match Test series.
The ICC has for long attempted to add context to bilateral cricket, and David Richardson, the chief executive, said the creation of the championship along with a 13 team one-day international (ODI) league that will act as a qualification pathway to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 will do just that.
The Ashes: World Test Championship
The inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) started on August 1 with arch-rivals Australia and England featuring in the 5-Test Ashes series.
Each match had 24 points riding on it. Australian captain Tim Paine’s men were the first team to open their account after a convincing 251 run victory at Edgbaston in their first match.
The first Test saw a remarkable comeback by Steve Smith to the longer format of the game. This was the former captain’s first Test since the sandpaper blunder.
He silenced English crowd with hundreds in both innings becoming only the fifth Australian player to do so in the history of Ashes. Nathan Lyon then took a 6-wicket haul in the second innings as the hosts failed on the final day.
Rain ruined the match as it led to a draw. Where Australia managed to hold onto a draw and gained 8 points for heir efforts.
England also clinched a similar number of points, thus opening their tally. Despite losing plenty of time due to rain, the match will be remembered for the bowling of Jofra Archer.
New Zealand tour of Sri Lanka: World Test Championship
The second set of World Test Championship games had mnSri Lanka hosting New Zealand in their maiden match from August 14.
Sri Lanka beat New Zealand by 6 wickets and gained a cheering 60 points for their efforts as they started the championships in style.
On a slow pitch, Dimuth Karunaratne made a composed fourth innings century. The hosts recorded their fifth highest successful chase in test cricket.
India tour of West Indies: World Test Championship
The first Test against the West Indies will mark India’s start. With the quest of winning the inaugural edition of the ICC World Test Championship.
Indian skipper Virat Kohli feels the opening of Test Championship will add purpose to the longest format of the game. With India set to begin their journey in the inaugural edition of the Test Championship today against Windies.
India will open their account in the World Test Championship against the West Indies on Thursday.
“I don’t think that batsmen have lived up to the standard,” Kohli said, urging the batsmen to step up to the plate.
“Batsmanship will always be hard at the Test level, but even harder now with the Championship where every decision you make counts in the larger scheme of things,” he added.
- New Zealand;
- South Africa;
- Sri Lanka;
- West Indies;
The teams will fight for top honours across 71 Test matches in 27 series over the next two years.