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World Test Championship

It’s official: The Scott Boland delivery to bowl Shubman Gill was the most threatening ball in the WTC final

Scott Boland bowls Shubman Gill
by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

CricViz data suggests that the ball bowled by Scott Boland to dismiss Shubman Gill in the second afternoon of the World Test Championship 2021-23 final is the best delivery of the Test match so far.

India did well to bowl out Australia for 469 in the 2021-23 World Test Championship final at the Kia Oval after the latter had amassed 327-3 on the first day.

There was still some time left in the fifth session, and Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill went after Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins straight away as India raced to 22-0 after three overs.


Cummins gave Starc a break after two overs, replacing him with Scott Boland. At the other end, Cummins trapped Rohit (15) leg-before with a ball that jagged back in.

Boland, having started with a maiden over to Rohit, began the next over with three balls just outside the off-stump. The line forced Gill to play each of them but, to his credit, Gill defended each of them solidly.

Boland bowled the next ball outside off. Gill, presumably under the impression that it would leave him or go straight on, decided to shoulder arms. To his horror, he watched the ball jag back in, almost absurdly, to hit off-stump.

As per the CricViz database, Boland’s ball was the “most threatening” ball of the Test match so far as well as the 10th-most threatening by an Australian in England since 2006, when ball-tracking data became available.

In fact, the ball Boland bowled to dismiss Gill in the WTC final had approximately a one-in-three chance of getting a wicket as per the Expected Wickets variable.

At the time of writing, India were 61-3 with Virat Kohli (9) and Ajinkya Rahane (7) at the crease. They trail by another 408 runs.

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