World Test Championship: What should India do to qualify for WTC final?
India lost the third Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in Indore on Friday (March 3) but the Rohit Sharma-led side is still in contention for a place in the final of the World Test Championship (WTC).
The India-Australia Test rubber ends in Ahmedabad with the fourth and final Test starting on March 9. India holds a 2-1 lead.
An outright victory in Ahmedabad will seal India’s place in the WTC final against Australia but if the team loses or plays a draw, its fate will depend on the outcome of the Sri Lanka-New Zealand series.
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Australia, by virtue of its nine-wicket win in Indore, has already qualified for the grand finale at The Oval in London from June 7-11.
Australia is sitting atop the WTC table with 68.52 percentage points (PCT).
Percentage points are calculated when points earned by a team are divided by the points contested for.
A team earns 12 points for a win, four for a draw, and six in case it’s a tie.
As of today, Australia has 148 points by virtue of 11 wins and four draws from 18 matches. Playing for 216 points on offer, they have a PCT of 68.52.
Even if Australia lose the fourth and final Test against India, they would still remain on top with 64.91 PCT (148/228×100).
What happens to India
India’s PCT is 60.29 after earning 123 points in 17 Tests (10 wins and 2 draws) so far. India has lost a few points during the course of this cycle due to slow over rate.
If India wins the last Test, its PCT will go up to 62.5 with 135 points from a maximum of 216 on offer (18 Tests). It will then retain its second position and will qualify for the final.
However, in case of a defeat, India’s PCT will drop to 56.94 and then they will have to depend on the result of Sri Lanka’s away series against New Zealand.
In case of a draw, India’s PCT will drop to 58.79 and even then they will have to wait for the result of the Sri Lanka-New Zealand series. Ditto in case of a tie where India’s PCT will be 59.72.
How can Sri Lanka qualify
Sri Lanka’s only shot at the final qualification will depend on a 2-0 victory in New Zealand which is one of the toughest away assignments for sub-continental teams.
Sri Lanka’s current PCT is 53.33 with 64 points from possible 120 (10 Tests).
If India happens to lose, draw or tie the final Test and Sri Lanka wins the series 2-0, its PCT will be 61.11 with 88 points from a maximum of 144 points at stake.
But if Sri Lanka draws even one game and wins 1-0, their maximum PCT will be 55.55 which will be less than what India (56.94) will have even if they lose the final Test.