Team India will likely have a shot at history as they took another step towards the World Test Championship (WTC) final as they now have a 2-0 lead in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Australia on the flip side need to avoid defeat in the remaining two matches of the series to guarantee a place in the final. But above all, a place in the history books is up for grabs as the 2023 WTC final could coronate the first Grand Slam champion in the International Cricket Council (ICC) history.
What is the ICC Grand Slam champion?
The word ‘Grand Slam’ often used in Tennis to denote the champion of all four major slams is well documented and could become a feature in cricket in days to come. A Grand Slam refers to all the trophies a team has won in the ICC tournaments with no team in that bracket yet. India came the closest to recording that feat in 2021 before they lost the 2021 WTC final to New Zealand.
India have won all the major ICC events except the WTC in search of another shot at the supreme achievement. India won the ODI World in 1983 and 2011 while also winning the 2007 T20 World Cup and the 2000 and 2013 Champions Trophies. In doing so, the Indian Team became the first of its kind in 2007 to have won all the ICC events. However, with the inception of WTC in 2021, it remains the only trophy missing from the cabinet and they would have a shot at it in June of this year.
Australia’s T20 World Cup success in 2021 saw them add another trophy to their cabinet but the inception of WTC that year meant that they did not join India as a complete Grand Slam champion. If the WTC final was to be decided on form, England would have had the best shot of winning the WTC final. However, the inability to lift the Champions Trophy means that they remain at arm’s length from the coveted Grand Slam.
Teams close to winning ICC Grand Slam
Australia – 5 ODI World Cups, 2 Champions Trophy, 1 T20 World Cup
India – 2 ODI World Cups, 2 Champions Trophy, 1 T20 World Cup, WTC Runners-Up
West Indies – 2 ODI World Cups, 1 Champions Trophy, 2 T20 World Cups
Sri Lanka – 1 ODI World Cup, 1 Champions Trophy, 1 T20 World Cup
Pakistan – 1 ODI World Cup, 1 Champions Trophy, 1 T20 World Cup
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WTC Final spot up for grabs
As things stand, India remain the closest to have come to winning a Grand Slam while the likes of Australia, Sri Lanka, West Indies and Pakistan have won the T20 World Cup, ODI World Cup and the Champions Trophy. Alongside India, New Zealand remain the only team to have played in the final of all ICC events but have failed to win the T20 World Cup and the ODI World Cup.
As things stand, a WTC final comprising India, Australia and Sri Lanka could see the first ICC Grand Slam champion being crowned. The WTC final will take place at the Oval from 7 to 11 June with 12 June as the reserve day.