New Zealand is now third, behind Australia and India in terms of percentage points gained.© Twitter
New Zealand bolstered their hopes of reaching the final of the ICC World Test Championship, after taking a 101-point victory over Pakistan in the first Test on Wednesday. The Kiwis scored 60 points in the ICC WTC standings to keep their dream alive of making it to the final of the mega event, even if the second Test match ends in a draw. The Kiwis will topple Australia to make it to the top of the ICC Test Team Rankings, but that won’t be enough to play the WTC Finals as the top two teams in WTC standings will close the horns on the showpiece. The team rankings are done independently and do not affect the ICC WTC table.
The Kiwis are now third, behind Australia and India in terms of percentage points won, the factor that determines final placements rather than total points gained, following a change in the points system due to the COVID-19 disruption.
On that basis, Australia and India are ahead of the points table. New Zealand, currently at 0.667 percentage points, could rise to 0.700 if they whitewash Pakistan and move into second place, depending on the results in the other series Down Under. However, a 1-1 draw would reduce them to 0.600 points.
Australia, which overtook India to the top spot following the regulatory change from maximum points to percentage points, currently stands at 0.766 after losing on Boxing Day on Tuesday.
India is at 0.722 in their fifth series and wants to go on top after an all-round showing in the second test. India will play four test matches in February and will have plenty of opportunities to improve their score. Australia now has to take off its socks if they want to play the WTC final. The two best teams at the end of the competition by percentage points will contest the final.
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