India retains ICC Test Championship mace despite series defeat against South Africa

South Africa had to whitewash India to give themselves a chance for the number one spot.

Virat Kohli | GETTY

India might have lost the Test series by 2-1, but the win in Johannesburg Test helped them in retaining the ICC Test Championship mace. They have also won an award of $1million. Kohli will be presented with the mace and the cash price in a presentation ceremony.

South Africa, on the other hand, lost their chance of becoming no.1 in Tests. Team India ensured that no team can go past them to become no.1 when the cut-off date of 3rd April comes for ICC rankings.

Even if South Africa goes on to win all four Tests against Australia in March, they won't reach no.1. India had arrived in South Africa on 124 points, with South Africa 13 points behind on 111 points. While South Africa gained 4 points, the loss has cost India 3 points after the series defeat.

Kohli had gotten the mace in 2016 after the Indore Test against New Zealand from Sunil Gavaskar. He had then become the 10th skipper since 2002 to get the mace.

South Africa needed to whitewash India, then a win by 2-0 or better against Australia would have helped them reclaim the mace they had last won in 2015. Now, Proteas will have to win at least one Test against Australia to retain second place in the Test table, which, in turn, will earn them $500,000.

In this scenario, Australia will pocket $200,000 for a third-place finish. However, if Australia wins by 3-0 or 4-0, then they will leapfrog South Africa into second place.

The winner of the two-Test New Zealand v England series, which will also be played in March, will decide which side finishes fourth on the table and will take home $100,000. A drawn series will mean New Zealand will finish ahead of England.

The cut-off for this year is April 3, which is the final day of the four-Test series between South Africa and Australia in Johannesburg, as well as last day of the two-Test series between New Zealand and England in Christchurch.


By Sihyeu Prakash Singh - 28 Jan, 2018

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