Cricket News

India vs NZ: ICC World Test Championship (WTC) Final Rules Explained

India and NZ as joint champions for a Draw as we look at the rules for World Test Championship final. 

The first edition of the ICC World Test Championship has been hit by probably the biggest disappointment we have seen so far in the tournament. We are already on day 5 of the WTC final (Technically Day 4), and the chances of a full match seem bleak. 

Just to recap a bit, the final of the World Test Championship is currently being played at Southampton in England from June 18-22 with a reserve day being kept on June 23. Unfortunately, the first day of the final witnessed heavy rains, and was washed out without a ball being bowled. 

The second day saw Team India bat first with the end of the day’s play reading a score of 146/3 in 64.4 overs. The third day saw a total of 76.3 overs being bowled of which India played 27.3 overs and New Zealand played 49 overs. The final scores for respective teams read 217/10 and 101/2 respectively. Meanwhile, Day 4 was washed out completely due to incessant rains. 

We now potentially have 196 overs of play left if no rain intervention occurs. But what happens if we don’t see the match being competed in the desired time? What are the new rules for the World Test Championship final? What are the remaining playing conditions? Let’s find out in this article. 

#1: Reserve Day:

ICC had earlier announced that June 18-22 will be the official 5 days of the World Test Championship final. In an unfortunate instance where the overs are lost during the official 5 days, and lost overs cannot be recovered under normal circumstances of making up for the lost time each day, a reserve day shall come into the equation. 

Looking at the current situation, Day 1 and Day 4 were completely washed out, and Day 2 and Day 3 saw partial overs left uncompleted. Hence, the reserve day, June 23 shall see a full quota of overs and even more being used to achieve the desired rules. Potentially, we have around 196 overs of play left if no rain interruption occurs. 

#2: Result in case of Draw or Tie

No matter how ridiculous it may sound, but in the case, at the end of Day 6 (Reserve day) we still don’t see any result, then the trophy shall be shared between India and New Zealand. That means, the first edition of the World Test Championship shall see India and New Zealand as the joint winners. 

The result looks highly probable as expecting both teams to get all out in 196 overs is an improbable task unless we see a dramatic collapse. Nevertheless, both Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson are yet to win a trophy for their respective countries under their captaincy. Who deserves more is a question mark, but both these legendary players will finally get their hands on the trophy. 

Some Additional Important Rules: 

Short Run:

The WTC final shall see the implementation of the ‘short run’ rule. The rule says the third umpire will automatically review the call for a ‘short run’, and communicate the same to the on-field umpire before the start of the next delivery. 

DRS Review:

The LBW review shall see the height of the margin of the wicket zone being lifted to top of stumps. This will ensure Umpire’s call margin around the stumps for both; height and width. In addition, the World Test Championship final shall be played using Grade 1 Dukes ball as seen below. 

ICC World Test Championship Final Dukes Ball // Image Source: ICC
ICC World Test Championship Final Grade 1 Dukes Ball // Image Source: ICC

Given the incessant rains, it has been a frustrating situation for fans around the globe. ICC has been criticized for choosing England as the location for this one-off final match given the unpredictable weather. If we don’t see the result of this match, ICC will be criticized even further. Even players, who spent so much time in Quarantine to play this all-important final will be left disappointed. 

Thanks for reading! What are your views on the rules of the ICC World Test Championship final? Please email your comments to

ALSO READ: Explained: World Test Championship New Rules – What’s different?

© AK4Tsay1 Cricalytics