first_imgIndia captain Virat Kohli on Monday said the team winning the Test championship mace gives him and his teammates extra pleasure and that it something they are “really proud of”.The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced India have won the ICC Test Championship mace and a prize money of $1 million after finishing as the No. 1 Test team on the cut-off date of April 1. Kane Williamson-led New Zealand finished second on the ICC Test rankings.Notably, India have won the ICC Test championship mace for the third straight year after their dominant performances both at home and overseas.Stressing India are looking forward to the ICC Test Championship that will be played between 2019 and 2023, Kohli said: “Retaining the ICC Test Championship Mace once again is something we are all really proud of. Our team has been doing well across formats but it gives us extra pleasure to come out on top of the Test rankings.”We all know of the importance of Test cricket and of how only the best can prosper in the format,” Kohli added.”Our team has a lot of depth and I am sure this will stand us in good stead once the ICC World Test Championship commences later this year. That is again something we are really looking forward to as it adds more context to Test match cricket.”Congratulating Team India on its achievement, ICC Chief Executive Manu Sawhney said: “I congratulate India on retaining the ICC Test Championship Mace and appreciate the passion Virat Kohli’s team has shown across formats over the past few years. It takes so much dedication and determination to consistently perform at the highest level in Test cricket.”advertisementIndia have been one of the most consistent Test playing nations over the last three years. Despite being on the road extensively for the last 12 months, India have been able to retain the top spot in the ICC Test rankings.Virat Kohli became the first India captain earlier this year to lead the side to a Test series win in Australia. Cheteshwar Pujara shone with the bat and pace bowlers wreaked havoc as India completed a historic 2-1 win over Australia, who were without the likes of Steve Smith and David Warner.Kane Williamson on New Zealand finishing secondNew Zealand’s consistent performances over the past year saw them climb from third position, needing them to only avoid losing the home series against Bangladesh last month to finish at the same position.The Kane Williamson-led side, who also had the satisfaction of seeing their captain get the ICC Spirit of Cricket award for 2018, earnt $ 500,000 after finishing with 108 points, eight behind India.”It’s an awesome achievement for our side to finish second in the ICC Test Team Rankings and as a team we should be very proud. It’s come off the back of a lot of hard work and perseverance; not just by the eleven guys on the field, but the entire squad and support staff,” Kane Williamson said.Also See:last_img