Battle of the Captains: Can Williamson Outshine Virat in the Fight for Supremacy?
The WTC Final has already delivered on the entertainment quotient, although Indians fans wouldn't be too pleased with what has transpired in the two days of cricket at the Rose Bowl. Kyle Jamieson continued his fine form with a fifer and a match score of 93.18 to show for his efforts as India was bundled out for 217.
The likes of Boult, Southee and Wagner also impressed with only Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane, who fell agonizingly short of a deserved fifty, holding their own in the middle-order. Rishabh Pant, who scored a hundred on his first tour of England, disappointed with a rash shot, which opened the floodgates for India.
The Kiwi innings has gotten off to a fine start despite two wickets falling late in the day. Devon Conway and Tom Latham have fifty-plus match scores to show for their efforts, although it is now down to Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor to take them through to a commanding position.
Although Williamson, who is one of the best batsmen in the world, has a knack for scoring runs in crunch situations, there's a small battle within this war that fans are keeping an eye on. Williamson has played a lot of cricket against his counterpart Virat Kohli, even dating back to the 2007 U-19 World Cup.
This WTC Final could well be the litmus test for either of them. While Virat has already landed the first blow with a decent knock, the onus is on Kane Williamson to reply with a good knock of his own. But how have the duo fared in the WTC? With both of them set to bat at least once in the next few days, and insight on their WTC campaigns is in order. Here's your dose of Sixer Insight to get you started for the week!
Williamson Edges Virat in WTC Match Score Average! Can he repeat the trick at the Rose Bowl?
Virat Kohli, for all his talent, hasn't been as effective in the WTC for India. In fourteen matches, Virat has scored 877 runs at an average of 43.85, which doesn't seem too bad. But here's where it gets messy.
Virat only averages a match score of 47.09, which is way below his standard. In fact, Virat has struggled to convert starts into hundreds, an art that Virat had owned before the beginning of the WTC. While there is no glaring weakness in Virat's game, his inability to get going has cost him and India on a few occasions.
Kane Williamson, on the other hand, has had a better WTC campaign so far. In nine matches, Williamson has accounted for 817 runs at an average of 58.35, including a double-hundred earlier in the year. Although his match score average of 54.35 doesn't seem much, Williamson has done well in the top-order for New Zealand.
Although Williamson has the edge over Virat in this match-up, the conditions at the Rose Bowl are different from what they are used to in their home countries. Virat looked the part before Jamieson got the better of him as he nearly got to a fifty. With the pitch deteriorating a bit, Williamson might find it a touch difficult.
But tough times is what brings out the best in Williamson, who has a knack for making complex things seem easy. Against a dominant bowling attack featuring Jasprit Bumrah, Williamson will need to outshine Virat and cement his legacy today, in what could be his most important day as a Kiwi batsman. Can he deliver the goods on Day 3? Only time will tell!