WTC: New Zealand the deserving winners but can there be better alternatives to determine champions in the future?

After 144 years and 2,425 games of Test Cricket, the world finally witnessed New Zealand engrave it's name on the coveted Test Mace after an epic win at the inaugural ICC World Test Championship Final against India at Southampton on Wednesday.

Having asked to chase a modest yet tricky 139 in 53 overs on a reserved sixth day, after losing day one and four to rain, New Zealand sealed the game at 140/2 as Ross Taylor scored the winning runs off Mohammad Shami, ending his side's 21 year drought at ICC events.

While there is no doubt that New Zealand were the deserving winners owing to their brilliant consistency over the recent years and clinical performances at all the fronts in the summit clash, the cricketing world is sparked with debates and arguments of whether a One off Test is the ideal way to determine the winner of such a long and demanding event.

The result or more so the process of determining the final result and even the selection of the venue for Championship finale has been put into question by several fans and players with many suggesting other alternatives for the future-

The Best of Three final – Right since the announcement of the Championship, the determination of the winner through a One off Test final irked many. Indian Captain Virat Kohli also said "I am not in absolute agreement of deciding the best side in the World over the course of one game."

He further added, "If it is a Test series, it has to be a test of character over three Tests – which team has the ability to come back in the series, or totally blow away the other team. It can't just be pressure applied over two days of good cricket and then you suddenly you are not a good Test side anymore. I don't believe in it."

Indeed, for a tournament that featured 61 games being played for nearly two years with teams giving their best to remain in the pinnacle of their form, fitness and consistency the One off Test final does look a bit unjustified with a three match series appearing as a more suitable alternative.

Reserved Venue – The Rains were a major spoilsport in the Finals with day one and day four being washed out and proving to be of advantage to the New Zealand side. Not just that, cricketing history is full of instances wherein the rains have deprived many deserving winners of the ultimate glory at several ICC events. Hence, a reserved venue should definitely be a viable option in case the weather predictions indicate unfavourable playing conditions.

Timeless Test – Probably the most interesting of all the suggested alternatives, the idea of a Timeless Test also found a place in discussions in the Hindi commentary Box during the game after a fan on twitter suggested it. A timeless Test is a game of Test Cricket which is played with no limitation of time, meaning the game is played until one team wins or the match is tied, with no theoretical possibility of a draw. Delays due to bad weather conditions will also not prevent the match ending with a definite result. The format guarantees a result and many argue that such a high profile tournament that has fans waiting for 2 long years to see a winner, should end in a definitive result without the draws or need to declare joint winners.

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