Do NZ have the best fast-bowling attack in the world?

Take a closer look at the raw numbers from the World Test Championship that reveal the leading pace attacks in the world

New Zealand's bowling coach, Australian Shane Jurgensen, says the Kiwis' World Test Championship triumph and their world No.1 Test ranking should end any debate about the Black Caps having the best pace-bowling attack in the world.

NZ's victory over India in Southampton last week was built on their four-pronged seam attack that has been so pivotal to their success since the WTC began two years ago.

The established trio of Tim Southee, Trent Boult and Neil Wagner has been joined more recently by rookie Kyle Jamieson, who has stormed onto the international stage with 46 wickets in just eight Tests.

Jurgensen, the former Queensland, Tasmania and WA representative, says there's no doubt in his mind that his pace attack is the best in the game.

"I think so (and) I've been thinking that for a while," he said this week.

"I think they are, and we can probably strongly say that right now. This hasn't been a fluke and it has been happening for a long time.

"As I said, the belief in the bowling group – how they plan, how fit they are, how strong they are and how much they believe in each other, the trust is amazing."

Black Caps storm home to win inaugural WTC final

But do the numbers back up Jurgenson's theory? Well, yes and no.

Based on the raw figures from the World Test Championship, the pace attacks of New Zealand, Australia, India and England are actually very hard to split.

England (255 wickets at 24.12 from 21 matches), New Zealand (188 wickets at 23.17 from 12 matches), Australia (187 wickets at 23.35 from 14 matches) and India (172 wickets at 22.15 from 18 matches) all had comparable inputs from their pacemen during the two years of the WTC.

But a deeper dive into those numbers reveal some notable differences between the four leading pace-bowling nations.

England are one out given they had a strike bowler in their top six in the form of Ben Stokes, who picked up 34 wickets at 26.26 from 17 Tests, while the other three countries did not have a significant input from a seam-bowling allrounder.

Joe Root's side, having played more WTC games that anyone else and rotated their players throughout, had a total of seven pacemen who finished with 15 or more wickets in the competition, compared just three for Australia, four for the Kiwis and five for India.

Australia relied almost entirely on Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc for their pace wickets in the WTC, with the trio all finishing in the top six of fast bowling wicket-takers for the competition and all averaging less than 25.

On the other hand, India – whose pace resources were stretched to the limit during an injury crisis in their famous series win in Australia last summer – had a more even spread and just two of their pacemen finished in the top 20.

Another notable difference between the Kiwi attack and those of the four other leading pace nations in the WTC was their under-reliance on spin to support the seam attack.

New Zealand's spinners picked up just 25 wickets during the WTC compared to 143 for India, 102 for England and 59 for Australia, while the Black Caps did not field a spinner in the final against India last week.

But with Test tours of India, Bangladesh and Pakistan on the horizon, the star Kiwi seamers are expected to take more of a back seat as the likes of Ajaz Patel and Will Somerville take on more responsibility.

"Seeing what Ajaz did against England was absolutely fantastic," Jurgensen said.

"I was so excited for Ajaz to get that opportunity at Edgbaston against England to see him get wickets in both innings – it was sort of real confidence for him.

"And also for us to again to say we have the subcontinent tours coming up and we have got Ajaz, Will and Rachin (Ravindra).

"There are plenty of options. (South Africa-born Michael) Rippon from Otago will qualify soon and there's plenty of guys putting up their hands. So, there's going to be some tough selections coming up."

Wickets taken by pace in the WTC

England – 255 wickets at 24.12

New Zealand – 188 wickets at 23.17

Australia – 187 wickets at 23.35

India – 172 wickets at 22.15

South Africa – 151 wickets at 27.83

West Indies – 130 wickets at 33.22

Pakistan – 92 wickets at 37.61

Sri Lanka – 68 wickets at 39.22

Bangladesh – 39 wickets at 42.94

Most wickets in the WTC (pace bowlers, min 40 wickets)

Pat Cummins (AUS) – 70 wickets at 21.02

Stuart Broad (ENG) – 69 wickets at 20.08

Tim Southee (NZ) – 56 wickets at 20.82

Josh Hazlewood (AUS) – 48 wickets at 20.54

Anrich Nortje (SA) – 47 wickets at 28.10

Mitchell Starc (AUS) – 44 wickers at 24.54

Kyle Jamieson (NZ) – 43 wickers at 12.53

Mohammad Shami (IND) – 40 wickets at 20.47

Jofra Archer (ENG) – 40 wickets at 27.37