World T20: Mohali pitch for India-Australia fixture changed into a turner at BCCI's behest, says report
Pitches for ICC tournaments like the World T20 is supposed to be prepared by an ICC-appointed curator, the rule of which is not meant to be interfered with.
The pitch at the IS Bindra PCA Stadium, the venue for the high-voltage India-Australia ICC World T20 2016 match, has reportedly been altered with to assist spinners as per the Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) request.
According to a report on Hindustan Times, BCCI sources have confirmed that the pitch for Sunday's crucial tie had been changed at the behest of the Indian team management.
"The game was scheduled to be played on a pitch which would have played similar to the one that was used for the Pakistan-Australia match. But India weren’t happy and have now requested a change. Now, the pitch that they have chosen will assist spin and maybe inconsistent bounce," an official was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.
The pitches in an ICC tournament are supposed to be prepared and offered by an ICC-appointed curator, the rule of which is not meant to be interfered with.
The Mohali pitch has offered support to the batsmen so far, with the Australian team posting a daunting total of 193 in their previous game against Pakistan, with the latter putting up 172 in reply.
The India-South Africa Test that took place here in November last year saw the spinners making merry with India's first innings score or 201 being the highest score in the match.
"You have seen what happened during last year’s Test against South Africa. PCA is known for its quick wicket. But the highest total in that match was 201 by India in the first innings.
"Moreover, the same pitch will be used for the women’s match between India and the West Indies before India take on Australia. There will definitely be some wear and tear. The pitch is likely to slow down in the evening," a Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) official was quoted as saying according to the report.
A similar move by India for their World T20 opening game against New Zealand backfired on the tournament hosts, with the Black Caps spinners feasting on a rank turner to dismiss India out for a paltry 79, recording a massive 47-run win in the process.
Nicknamed Cooper, it lived in southwest Queensland between 92–96 million years ago, when Australia was attached to Antarctica.
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India will travel to Sri Lanka for a limited-overs tour next month and the BCCI announced a 20-man squad for the tour, packed with youngsters, including six uncapped players.