Southampton: New Zealand fast bowler Neil Wagner has said that the World Test Championship (WTC) final will be like playing the final of the World Cup.
New Zealand and India will face face-to-face Southampton in the final of the WTC starting at the Ages Bowl from June 18. Earlier, New Zealand would also play a two-match Test series against England at Lord’s from 2 June.
“Yes, it is like a World Cup final for me. I think the biggest disappointment in my career is that I have never really played white ball game for New Zealand or have ever been able to make a dent in T20 or T20. one day game. That ship has probably sailed now and I don’t think the opportunity will ever come, “ESPNcricinfo quoted Wagner as saying.
“For me, now it’s all about putting all my attention and energy into the test, cricket and a. To be able to play in the World Test Championship final is like a World Cup for me.”
“I know this final is a first and there is not much history around it, but it is the beginning of something that is very big. To be able to test themselves against the best on the highest and biggest stage – to play in the only Test final against India – one of the best teams in the world, if not the best team in the world .
“It’s very exciting, but I don’t want to think too far ahead. Don’t want to let this opportunity pass you by, just treat it like another Test match and do what you do. This is definitely going to be a special occasion. It certainly is, ”he said.
After the UK tour, New Zealand wicketkeeper-batsman BJ Watling will retire from all formats of cricket.
Talking about Watling, Wagner said: “He is a top man and will be sorely missed in this team. He is the glue and gel of the team and has been around for a long time. I have always appreciated his honesty. He is one of those who put me back in line when needed, but will also encourage you and pick you up during difficult days. ”
“He has always been there for me, whether it is for plans or ideas. No matter how tired he is, he will sprint from the ‘keeping side’, running all the way to chat with you with some plans. He has been a class performer for this team and has always been seen as someone who has done things well enough and encourages himself and those around the team.”
“The Indian team will arrive in the UK via charter flight on 3 June 2021 and bring proof of a negative PCR test,” the ICC said in an official release. Prior to the visit, the party would have spent 14 days in a bio-safe environment in India, during which regular testing would take place.
Upon landing, they will proceed directly to the on-site hotel in the Hampshire Bowl, where they will be re-tested before beginning a period of managed isolation. Regular tests will be performed during the period of isolation.
Players’ activity will be allowed to increase gradually after each round of negative testing, moving from isolated practice to small groups and then to larger squad activity, always staying within a bio-safe site.
The New Zealand team is in the UK ahead of the Test series against England and the team will move out of the ECB’s bio-secure environment. The WTC final will be subject to regular testing before and after the arrival in Bubble and Southampton on 15 June.