- June 2, 2023
The crucial journey in the World Test Championship – WTC 2023 is slowly coming to the phase where fans can make out who will be the two finalists to play at Lord’s in 2023. Out of nine teams, three of them have lost their chances of qualifying for the next round. Those three teams are defending champions New Zealand, England, and Bangladesh.
So what do the remaining six need to do? Here, we look at the scenarios that will play a crucial part in their qualification for the WTC 2023 final.
Also read: The Rise of Indian Sports: A Reckoning force
WTC 2023 | Points Table at the moment
The following Points Table is updated following its conclusion of the 2nd Sri Lanka vs Australia Test match (i.e. 11 July 2022):
|#||Standings||Points||PCT%||Remaining series (Test matches)|
|1||South Africa||60||71.43%||3 | ENG (3), WI (2), AUS (3)|
|2||Australia||84||70%||3 | WI (2), SA (3), IND (4)|
|3||Sri Lanka||52||54.17%||2 | PAK (2), NZ (2)|
|4||Pakistan||44||52.38%||3 | SL (2), ENG (3), NZ (2)|
|5||India||75||52.08%||2 | BAN (2), AUS (4)|
|6||West Indies||54||50%||2 | SA (2), AUS (2)|
|7||England||64||33.33%||1 | SA (3)|
|8||New Zealand||28||25.93%||1 | SL (2)|
|9||Bangladesh||16||13.33%||1 | IND (2)|
Looking at the table, it is clear that the bottom three have no chance to progress further. The top six, however, will have to battle their skins out to reach the top spot. We will look at the teams one by one and see what must they need to do to qualify.
The Proteas side has the remaining 3 WTC series. Two difficult tours of ENG and AUS while battling one with WI at home. If South Africa can win any one of the two away tours while winning the home series against the West Indies, they will comfortably get through the spot. Even winning one of the three series will keep them above 60% PCT mark and will be in contention for the final.
Following the series draw in Sri Lanka 1-1, the Aussies will play against the West Indies for two games before they travel to India for four matches.
Australia has the best chance of qualifying. They have nine games remaining and they have the best shot at ‘5 wins, 2 losses, and 2 drawns’ as seen in the table above. As the tweet stated, even if Australia loses three games, they are certain of qualifying.
By winning the second Test to draw the series, Sri Lanka will now play Pakistan for two WTC matches. It will begin two days from now (16 July 2022). Sri Lanka has two series; one each home and away. They have four games remaining. For the best case of qualifying, they MUST win all four games. The least they can do is lose one and win all. But anything than that will hurt them.
The two games against Pakistan will be their best chance to sweep the series. Should they do it, then all they need is one more win. Their last series will be in New Zealand’s difficult conditions.
On July 16, Pakistan will begin their slightly difficult WTC journey with the series against Sri Lanka. Afterwards, they will play three games against England and two games against New Zealand all at home.
In terms of qualifying scenarios, they must win at least five and draw two. This will give them a total of 66% giving them a certain chance of qualifying. A ‘six-win, loss one’ will give them a fine chance of 69% of PCT.
India lost the Edgebaston Test meant that they slipped to fifth. They have six remaining games; one at home against Australia and one away against Bangladesh. One can say that India have found an easy path to qualify.
Of the six games, India needs at least five games to qualify with one game can either be drawn or loss. The five-win from six games will give them a certain chance of qualifying. Anything less than five wins will dent their chances. So India must fancy their chances and win these easy six games.
It is a sim chance, but the West Indies can surprise everyone and make it to the finals. They have to play two away tours in South Africa and Australia. It is a very difficult chance, but it is a chance. Should they win all four games, they will get to 65.38% which will give them a chance to secure the top two spots.
Which two teams do you think will qualify for the World Test Championship 2023 Final? Comment below.