So .after the conclusion of the 3rd day-night test between India and England at the world’s largest cricket stadium inside two days, the expected debate regarding the quality of pitch has already made noise around the cricketing world.
This never-ending debate regarding the Indian pitches has always become the topic of attention every time team India plays at home. When India lost the first test match in Chennai on a flat wicket that showed the demons on the last two days, It was expected that team India will opt for the rank turner for the second test. As expected, the ball started to turn from the very first morning and makes the life of the batsman very tough, and England got bundled out inside four days.
Former players and the entire cricketing world questioned the quality of the pitch. but team India defended it in the name of home advantage. But after the debacle of the third pink ball test, it’s time that we should sit back and analyze why we deserve better pitches for home test matches.
Traditionally, Indian subcontinent pitches are generally flat and offer support to the batsman with some help to pacers in the first half and then as the match progresses, spinner came into the play on the last two days. But in the recent past team, India has offered the rank turner to every touring team and that reflects their dominant home record in this decade. They have played 27 test matches in the last 5 years and only lost one. But this all has come at the cost of entertaining and competitive cricket.
Indian Team’s management has often used the cushion of the home advantage thing while defending the turning tracks. which is partially understandable. Traditionally each country has a specific condition that favors their home team. Green track in England, New Zealand, pace and bounce in South Africa and Australia have favored their home team but these tracks ofter provide the competitive cricket and even contest between bat and ball. Ashes 2019, border Gavaskar trophy 21, etc has provided top-quality cricket that keeps viewers and fans interested till the last session if not the last ball of the test match.
In the last few years drop in test match viewership has been a worrying sign for the cricket’s beloved format. And many options like a 4-day test, day-night test matches have been explored. No marketing gimmick can save test cricket if the quality of cricket is substandard. Pitches like Motera have been a very poor advertisement for test cricket.
India has been the dominant force in this cricketing era. India is dominating this era like the West Indies team of the 80s and Australia of the early 2000s. The main reason for domination has been the emergence of quality test match bowlers. Be it Bumrah, Ishant, Bhuvi, Umesh, Shami or new guns like Siraj, Shardul, and Natrajan. India’s test bowling attack has come a long way from the days of Kapil Dev.
In India’s historical win against Australia on their home soil, the Indian pace attack played a vital role. Third sting Indian pace attack dominates full-strength Australian side in their backyard. so that defines we don’t need rank turners to win test matches.
Test cricket has always been the epitome of the sport and It’s more than just a sport for the similarity it poses with life. It tests your patience, perseverance, fighting spirit against all odds and come victories. Like life, it always gives a second chance t0 redeem yourself. It’s much more than the game, it is more than just victory and defeat. It’s always about playing and fighting.
And pitches like this spoil the whole emotion of the game. that’s why we need better pitches to keep our sport’s most beloved format alive.