WTC 2023 Final: The World Test Championship final is less than 10 days away and the teams are gearing up for the mega clash in England. India and Australia will have a go at each other for the coveted mace in Test cricket and look to bring the glory home. Meanwhile, as both the teams mull over their team combinations, former Aussie captain Ricky Ponting has opened on India's team.
Ponting has stated that India will play both Ravi Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja even though the match will be held in England. "I think they will pick Jadeja and Ashwin because Jadeja can hold that No.6 batting spot. His (Jadeja) batting has improved that much that they can pick him as a batter now who might just bowl a few overs if required," Ponting told in ICC Review Podcast.
Ponting then highlighted that Jadeja has good batting skills and he can be looked at as a batter too and not just a spin option. "There is no doubt that Ashwin is a more skilled and better Test bowler than what Jadeja is, but if Jadeja can hold down that batting spot and then as the game goes on, getting into the fourth and fifth day, if it does start to turn, then you have got that really high-class second spin bowling option if required," he explained.
The former Aussie skipper also stated that the surface at The Oval has a good batting track but there is spin too in some matches. "Historically, the Oval pitch has been a very good batting wicket. It's generally offered something for the fast bowlers on day one, but not a lot. But I have also played some games there where it has turned a lot. If it starts a little bit dry, it can turn a lot.
Ishan Kishan is an X factor
Ponting stated that the Indian team can go with Ishan Kishan as the wicket-keeping option as he provides an 'X' factor to the team."If I was them [India], knowing the importance of this game - and you have to win this Test match - I'd be going with Ishan Kishan in this game," Ponting said.
"He provides that little bit of X-factor that you need when you might be pushing for a win in a Test match. Obviously, if Rishabh Pant is fit, he is playing, and he provides that X-factor for India.
"But with him not being there, and this is no blot on Bharat whatsoever, but I think Kishan just provides that little bit more X-factor, who'd do a good job with the gloves but can provide that really high-scoring run rate that is required in a one-off Test match to push for a win," he added.