India’s journey to the World Test Championship final began with a two-match test series against West Indies away from home, right after their 2019 ODI World Cup heartbreak.
India won both the matches comprehensively by 318 runs and 257 runs. The standout performance of the series was a brilliant bowling effort from Jasprit Bumrah that also included a hat-trick.
Next up, India took on South Africa at home and cleaned them up easily by 3-0, winning the first test match by 203 runs and following it up with innings victories in the next two matches. Indian smashed Bangladesh by an innings in both the matches of the series. This included their maiden pink ball test match at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
India’s only series defeat in the World Test Championship occurred in New Zealand, where they were completely outplayed by the home team, getting beaten by 10 wickets in the first test match and seven wickets in the next test match.
Although it is true that they got the rough end of the conditions and there was enough grass on the pitches for cattle to graze, New Zealand played better cricket in the given conditions and the Indian team did not seem to have any answers for it.
However, the quality with which India trounced Australia on their tour Down Under by 2-1 despite battling a host of injuries meant that they were on a high going into the home test series against England.
It came as a massive setback when the team lost the series opener by 227 runs, but they showed what they were made of with victories by 317 runs and 10 wickets in the following two test matches in Chennai and Ahmedabad respectively.
By the time the final test match of the series arrived, India had gained a massive psychological edge over the scarred visitors. Despite the pitch in Ahmedabad not being as spin bowling friendly, England could only manage 205 runs in the first innings, with India plundering 365 in their first dig.
England were bowled out for just 135 in the second innings and suffered a defeat by an innings and 25 runs as India took the series 3-1 to reiterate their dominance, at least in the subcontinental conditions.
In doing so, the team booked their berth for the World Test Championship final as well. Waiting for them there are familiar foes in New Zealand.