Different players have stepped up and delivered: Rohit Sharma on WTC cycle

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25 May 2023 | 03:37 PM
authorcricket.com staff

Different players have stepped up and delivered: Rohit Sharma on WTC cycle

India will take on Australia at the summit clash at The Oval, starting June 7

All eyes will be on the World Test Championship (WTC) final after the conclusion of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 on Sunday (May 28). India have made it to both the finals so far, but this time they will be up against the Pat Cummins-led Australian side. The summit clash will be played from June 7 at The Oval.

Rohit Sharma will lead India for the first time in a WTC final. He lavished praise on his team for playing tough cricket throughout the cycle and acknowledged different players have put their hands up at different times and delivered.

"I thought in that cycle we played some really, really tough cricket. We were challenged a lot of times and I thought to come out of that was obviously going to take a lot of character from not just a few individuals, but everyone," he said in a video posted by BCCI.

"It's a cycle of two years and we play a lot of Test matches during that period. Lot(s) of players have played in that cycle. Different individuals have stepped up, putting the performances that we were looking for from the individual."

India will go into the WTC final without the likes of Jasprit Bumrah, Rishabh Pant and Shreyas Iyer - all of whom have played a key role in helping India reach this point. Senior batter Cheteshwar Pujara says that the team should not forget the trio's contribution. 

"There have been many players who have contributed to the team. Some of them are not part of this squad currently, but it's important that we recognise all the players that have contributed in this cycle," Pujara said.

"It's been a great team effort... the team management, captain, everyone has been looking forward to this moment where we qualify for the WTC finals and the guys are really excited to play at The Oval. We've got some good memories playing against England in UK. Overall, if I look at the last couple of years, it's been a very good journey for the Indian Test team."

All-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin says making it to back-to-back WTC finals is no mean feat. He reckons Idnia's turnaround in Test happened in 2014, following the retirement of MS Dhoni.

"The turnaround definitely started in 2014. MS Dhoni had just retired and we had all played for a few Tests... and we had to start a journey of our own," Ashwin said.

"Never easy without the seniors, but I can comfortably say that all the efforts we have put in have come really to fruition over the last two cycles of WTC. 

"We are qualifying for the second time on the trot [for the WTC finals]. It is no mean feat. We would have loved to win the series in India 3-1 or 3-0 or whatever it is but Australia played some good cricket. We weren't able to do that. However, for the consistent cricket we have played, we've been rewarded with this final."

India finished second in the WTC table this cycle, picking up 58.8% of the total points available. Australia finished first securing 66.67 of the points. The two teams recently clashed in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy with India winning the four-match series 2-1.

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Australia vs IndiaICC World Test Championship, 2023IndiaAustraliaRohit SharmaCheteshwar PujaraRavichandran AshwinJasprit BumrahShreyas IyerRishabh Pant

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