Sri Lanka vs New Zealand: Kane Williamson says World Test Championship like added 'carrot' for a team before every match

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is excited about the World Test Championship, ahead of his side's two-match Test series against Sri Lanka

Agence France-Presse, Aug 13, 2019 17:54:02 IST

Galle: New Zealand start their world test championship campaign against Sri Lanka on Wednesday and captain Kane Williamson said that vying for a place in a world final will add to the competitive edge in future series.

Williamson's side returns to cricket action in Galle exactly a month after their cruel World Cup defeat by England, with the Kiwi skipper welcoming the addition of a new potential title. After several delays, the world championship was finally launched at the end of last month. The world's top nine ranked teams will compete over two years for a place in the final at Lord's.

Sri Lanka vs New Zealand: Kane Williamson says World Test Championship like added carrot for a team before every match

File photo Kane Williamson. AFP

"It's a welcome addition to the Test format, bringing that context into every Test match that you play," Williamson told reporters. "Every time you play any team it's very, competitive, but now there's that added carrot where in two years time everyone is vying for an opportunity to play in a Test Championship final, which will be a really exciting thing to be a part of."

New Zealand are currently ranked number two in Tests and a 2-0 series win over Sri Lanka will help them claim the top spot from India. "If that happens, that would be great. The thing with rankings is that they fluctuate throughout a season, and are purely a reaction to the cricket that you're playing," said Williamson.

"For us, we're just focused on cricket because that gives us the best chance of success. We're looking forward to the challenge here against Sri Lanka. "The tourists' hopes could be hit by bad weather as rain is predicted on the first two days of the Galle match.

Neither team could train Tuesday because of rain. "In the 10 or 12 days that we've been here, about eight of them have been rained out. It's just one of those things that you try and prepare mentally as best as you can," said Williamson.

On paper, New Zealand are the stronger side having two players each in the rankings for top bowlers and batsmen. None of the Sri Lankan players feature in the top ten bowling or batting rankings.

Sri Lanka will be looking to build upon their improvement since Dimuth Karunaratne took the captaincy in February and they became the first Asian nation to win a Test series in South Africa.

"We did our basics right in South Africa and that's the reason why we won. We are in a good position now and we are excited to play tomorrow," said Karunaratne. "What I have done is to give freedom to all players and they have gone onto express themselves with their performances," he said.

Updated Date: Aug 13, 2019 17:54:02 IST






Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3778 105
5 Australia 2640 98
6 Sri Lanka 3462 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 4756 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 India 8099 261
5 Australia 5471 261
6 New Zealand 4056 254