Heavy rain in Southampton delays start to inaugural World Test Championship final between India and New Zealand – with MORE rain forecast over the next five days and just ONE reserve day in place
- The inaugural World Test Championship final was due to start at 10:30am
- However, rain has frustrated both India and New Zealand at the Ageas Bowl
- Further rain is scheduled during the final three days of the scheduled five days
- A reserve day is allowed but only if time is not made up on same day as it is lost
The hotly-anticipated final at the Ageas Bowl was scheduled to start at 10:30am but the rain kept Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson’s men off the field until after lunch at the earliest.
The winner of the clash will become cricket’s first ever ‘Test champions’ as well as earning £1.135million in prize money, but further rain scheduled over the course of the next five days could put a spanner in the works for both sides.
Heavy rain in Southampton meant no play was possible on the first morning of the inaugural World Test Championship between India and New Zealand
The rain kept Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson’s men off the field until after lunch at the earliest
The current forecast shows that the downpour is set to continue for the rest of Friday, while further rain is set to fall at the ground on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, the final three days of the scheduled five.
The possibility exists that the final therefore ends in a draw due to the bad weather, in which case the the two finalists will share the Test mace and split the prize money for first and second places equally.
The playing conditions for the final do allow for a reserve day but can only be used if net playing time is lost during the scheduled five days.
Net playing time equates to six hours of play per day and 30 overall, with the reserve day only enforced if time lost during regulation play on any given day of the Test is not made up on the same day.
Further rain is forecast during the final but a reserve day is in place for the game in Southampton
New Zealand have come into the final after beating England in a two-match Test series
The final is set to be contested in front of 4,000 crowds daily, and if there is a deciding result, the losers of the final will still be taking home £567,000.
Williamson’s New Zealand have come in to the final on the back of a series victory in England against Joe Root’s men for the first time since 1999.
The Black Caps skipper was absent from their crushing win at Edgbaston last weekend through injury but has returned to help take on Kohli’s number one-ranked Indian team following two years of qualification.
New Zealand have won their last two Tests against India, which were played in February 2020.
The final is set to be contested in front of 4,000 crowds daily in Southampton