Rohit Sharma-led India clinched the second Test against Australia in Delhi by six wickets after a massive collapse for Australia on Sunday and in the process edged closer to confirm their place in the ICC World Test Championship final.
Spinner Ravindra Jadeja returned figures of 7-42 to help India beat Australia by six wickets inside three days of the second Test to take a 2-0 series lead on Sunday.
Jadeja led the bowling to dismiss Australia for 113 and India romped to their victory target of 115 in the second session in New Delhi.
Australia continue their lead at the top of the standings, but will now be entering somewhat nervous territory. India need another win to ensure their place in the top two and reach the final, as they needed a 3-1 win or better in this series. For Australia, it is going to be a worry to first make sure they are not losing all four matches in this series. They still need just a draw but a 0-4 will mean, Sri Lanka will stand an outside chance if they can defeat New Zealand 2-0 away.
The current cycle runs from July 2021 to June 2023 and comprises the top nine Test teams, all of whom will play six series each - three at home and three away. The top two teams will compete in the final, now confirmed to be at the Oval in June.
WTC standings after Delhi Test
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Australia remain atop the standings despite the defeat reducing their percentage tally to 66.67%, while India widen the gap between themselves and third spot thanks to their victory in Delhi, moving to 64.06%.
As a result of India’s victory, the number of teams able to qualify for the Final shrinks from four to three. South Africa drop out of contention, unable to reach the percentage points required to break into the top two, leaving Sri Lanka as the lone challenger for a place at the Ultimate Test.
Sri Lanka currently sit third in the standings on 53.33%, and they head to New Zealand next month knowing that not only must they win both Tests in their two-match series to stand any chance of qualification, but they are also reliant on favourable results in the remaining Tests between India and Australia.
The third Test between India and Australia starts in Indore on 1 March with the hosts able to secure their place at The Oval with another victory. Anything less, and Australia will become the first team to qualify for the World Test Championship Final.
Remaining ICC World Test Championship Fixtures
South Africa v West Indies (1st Test) – Centurion, South Africa, 28 February-4 March
India v Australia (3rd Test) – Dharamsala, India, 1-5 March
South Africa v West Indies (2nd Test) – Johannesburg, South Africa, 8-12 March
New Zealand v Sri Lanka (1st Test) – Christchurch, New Zealand, 9-13 March
India v Australia (4th Test) – Ahmedabad, India, 9-13 March
New Zealand v Sri Lanka (2nd Test) – Wellington, New Zealand, 17-21 March