'If they want to pursue with WTC, a best of three would be ideal': India head coach Ravi Shastri
- Going forward, India head coach Ravi Shastri has batted for a best of three series to determine the winner of the World Test Championships final.
Echoing the views of former India captain Kapil Dev, current Indian men’s cricket team head coach Ravi Shastri said there should be a best of three final to decide the winner of the World Test Championship. Shastri and captain Virat Kohli were addressing the press before India left for the UK in the wee hours of Thursday to play the WTC final against New Zealand in Southampton from June 18 and five games against England starting August 4.
"I think ideally, in the long run, if they want to pursue this Test championship, a best of three final would be ideal. A three-match series as a culmination of two and a half years of cricket," Shastri said during the virtual interaction.
"But they need to finish off the Future Tours Program (FTP) and then start all over again. So one-off is one-off, guys have earned their stripes, and this is not a team that has suddenly blossomed overnight."
India fly to the UK after a 14-day quarantine while New Zealand are already getting valuable practice with the two-match series underway against England. Talking about the importance of the WTC final, Shastri said, it is the biggest if not the biggest ever since India reaching the WTC final is a culmination of years of work the players have put together.
"See, it is the first time that you have a Test Championship final. When you look at the magnitude of the game that's going to be played, I think this is the biggest, if not the biggest ever, because it's the toughest form of the game.
"It's a format that tests you. It's not happened over three days or three months, it's happened over two years, where teams have played each other around the world, and earned their stripes to play the finals so it's one heck of an event," he said.
Kohli, who will be leading India for the second time in England, agreed with coach Shastri's thoughts about the WTC final holding a lot of value.
"All of us take a lot of pride in playing Test cricket, and the way, we have progressed as a side is an example of what Test cricket means to us. So, for all of us as a unit, those who have been part of the Test side for many years, this is like an accumulation of all the hard work," he said.