Ian Chappell insisted that the “local curators” should be left to carry out their work.© AFP
India’s win over New Zealand in the semi-finals of the Cricket World Cup was marred by a “pitch swapping” controversy. The International Cricket Council’s head pitch consultant had accused the host nation accused of changing track for the semi-final between India and New Zealand from a fresh to a used one. A few reports suggested that while a fresh pitch was originally prepared for the last-four match at the Wankhede Stadium, later it was decided to play the game on a “used” deck in order to help Indian spinners.
However, the ICC later confirmed that Atkinson was taken into confidence on the change of surface, and the decision to change the track has nothing uncommon to it.
“Changes to planned pitch rotations are common towards the end of an event of this length, and have already happened a couple of times. This change was made on the recommendation of the venue curator in conjunction with our host,” the ICC said in a statement.
With hosts India set to take on Australia in the final on Sunday, the debate around the pitch has hogged all the limelight.
However, former Australia captain Ian Chappell insisted that the “local curators” should be left to carry out their work without anyone else’s interference.
“I think the same as I’ve always thought; that the curator should make the pitch and the players play on it and it should be up to no one else other than the curator, the local curator,” Ian Chappell told Wide World of Sports.
“I’ve always said about every pitch – don’t worry about World Cups, anything else – the curator makes the pitch and everybody else stays out of it.”
On Friday, Australia pacer Josh Hazlewood said he is confident that curators will carve out a pitch suitable for everyone.
“We played England at Ahmedabad and the wicket was pretty good without being an absolute flat track, so I expect probably something similar to that,” Hazlewood told Cricket.com.au.
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