The ICC World Test Championship Final to be played from 7th June to 11th June between India and Australia in England is predicted to be a cracker of a contest as both these teams are very competitive and seem equal on paper.
A test match is generally a test of a team in all three major departments of the game – batting, bowling, and fielding. The test varies according to the conditions that a team is playing in. For example – When playing in the subcontinent, batters have to play spin very well, when playing in South Africa, batters have to adjust to the uneven bounce, and when playing in the English conditions, adapt to the conditions well and just play the ball because you never know how much swing is going to be there.
It is expected that the batters of India and Australia have a huge test coming in front of them when they face two of the most lethal pace attacks in the world in conditions almost perfect for the bowlers and close to a nightmare for the batters.
Well, if you think about what could be the ideal batting line-up to face these conditions and you look at the predicted line-ups of India and Australia, you would be saying these are exactly the batting line-ups that can score runs in these conditions.
Starting with the Indian line-up, Rohit Sharma and Shubhman Gill are going to be the sure-shot openers. Gill is in sublime form lately and will be buzzing to score runs and continue to make 2023 his year. Pujara, Kohli, and Rahane will most probably be back together once again to hold the fort in the middle order and play according to the situation.
Pujara is back among the runs, Kohli has unleashed his 2.0 version which is looking even better than his first one, and Rahane has made a comeback to the best format of the game. These three will be just waiting to get their chance and show up on the biggest stage. There’s still doubt about who will keep wickets in the absence of Pant.
I think Ishan Kishan will be handed the India cap as he is kind of a like-for-like replacement for Pant and can probably be the X-factor player. Jadeja and Ashwin know how to bat very well and will be there for the team if an opportunity arises.
Talking about the Kangaroos, David Warner and Usman Khwaja will be the opening pair. Khwaja was really good in the Border-Gavaskar trophy and will be looking to continue his form. Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, and Travis Head at 3,4, and 5 are a no-brainer. Having been playing in the County, Smith and Labuschagne have prepared well for the big game.
Cameron Green, the X-factor, will bat at 6 with Alex Carey to follow at 7. Green has been phenomenal in his debut IPL season and now will be looking to show his game at the Oval against India.
The batting line-ups of both teams look very sorted and powerful. There is a good mix of attacking batters as well as players who can hold one end. The major chunk will depend on the conditions and how quickly the batters adapt to them.
One thing is for sure both batting line-ups will be challenged because of the fiery pace attacks but they seem more than ready for the challenge.