With the ODI and T20I formats having their own showpiece events in the World Cup and the World T20 respectively, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has decided to give the Test format a better sense of relevance by creating the World Test Championship.
Much like the Women's Championship, the World Test Championship will be contested in the league format, taking place over a period of two years — a first in the men's game.
The advent of the Twenty20 format and the mushrooming of various 20-over leagues all over the world played a role in declining interest in Test cricket, which was evident in the low turnouts in the five-day format, especially in the subcontinent. Additionally, bilateral series often got mundane, especially when contested between two sides with a vast difference in terms of their rankings, often leading to one-sided encounters.
With the Test Championship, the ICC hopes to boost viewership in the classic format of the game; every match contested in this tournament having a potential impact on the fortunes of other teams.
The inaugural edition of the Championship began with the first Test of the 2019 Ashes at Edgbaston on 1 August, with Australia becoming the first team to collect points with a resounding win. A total of nine teams will take part in the event — all the Test-playing nations barring Zimbabwe, Afghanistan and Ireland.
Each team plays a total of three home and away series', with the league phase ending on 31 March, 2021. The top two teams then qualify for the final that takes place in June, 2021.
Below is the full points table for the ongoing Test Championship:
In July, England had clinched the home-series against West Indies at Old Trafford after winning the third Test. This was followed by their latest home series victory against Pakistan in the longest format. They clinched the series 1-0, with the second and third matches being drawn.
Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.
But Malan was only drafted into England's squad for a three-match one-day international series against Australia on Wednesday, and just as a reserve batsman.
Follow the full scorecard and live commentary on the 1st ODI between England and Australia at the Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester.
Follow live updates on the 2nd ODI between England and Australia at the Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester, with the visitors currently leading the series 1-0.