WTC Final: India vs New Zealand stats, records preview; Ashwin’s hold over Williamson, Pant’s dropped catches

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Who are the favourites to win the WTC Final? Let’s go through these numbers to find out!

1. India and New Zealand have played 59 Tests against each other dating back to 1955. India have won 21 and the Kiwis have won 12 while the remaining 26 matches ended in draw. However, in the last seven Test matches between India and New Zealand, each team picked up three wins apiece and drawing one. But the Black Caps have won each of the last two meetings in that span.

2. This will be the first men’s Test match between India and New Zealand at the Ageas Bowl. India have lost each of their previous two games at the venue – both against England – while this will be the Black Caps’ first Test at the ground.

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3. India have lost just one of their last nine men’s Test series since the beginning of October 2018 (W7 D1), their only loss during this time came against New Zealand in early 2020 (2-0).

4. India have lost just one of their last seven men’s Test matches (W5, D1), this loss came against England at home during February 2021.

5. New Zealand are undefeated in their last eight men’s Test matches (W7, D1); the last time they enjoyed a longer unbeaten run was a nine-match span from June 2002 to December 2003 (W3, D6).

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6. Since the beginning of 2020, India (50.9) and New Zealand (53.4) have the best and second-best bowling strike rate of any team in men’s Test cricket.

7. Since the beginning of 2020, New Zealand have the best catch success percentage (80%) of any team in men’s Test cricket (min. 3 matches), four percentage points higher than India (76%).

8. Since the beginning of 2019, no wicketkeeper has dropped more catches in men’s Tests than India’s Rishabh Pant; he has dropped 12 in that time, three of which were classified as hard (6 medium, 3 easy). Oops, buckle up young man as this is a big occasion!

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9. No spinner has taken Kane Williamson’s (New Zealand) wicket more times in Test cricket than India’s R Ashwin (5, also Pragyan Ojha who has been retired); his false shot percentage of 21.9% against Ashwin is his highest against any bowler he has faced a minimum of 150 balls. Ashwin vs Williamson. Bring it on then!

10. Trent Boult (New Zealand) has taken 27 Test wickets in England, his most in any country outside New Zealand; his bowling strike of 49.1 in England is his second best in any country in this format (Sri Lanka – 44.1). Can Indian batsmen tackle the left-arm pacer?

(With OPTA/STATS PERFORM INPUT)

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