ODI World Cup final pitch receives ‘Average’ rating from ICC

The second semi-final at Eden Gardens too received the same remark.

By Koustav Sengupta

Updated - 08 Dec 2023, 09:45 IST

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The International Cricket Council (ICC) has given an ‘Average’ rating to the pitch that was used between India and Australia in the ODI World Cup finale which was played at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. The second semi-final, which was played between Australia and South Africa at Eden Gardens too received the same remark from the governing council.

Notably, the pitch rating for the final was given by the match referee Andy Pycroft while Javagal Srinath was in charge of the second semi-final in Kolkata. As per reports, India skipper Rohit Sharma along with some of the support staff have already communicated to BCCI regarding the state of the surface on which the final was played.
Batting first on the slow and sluggish wicket, the Men in Blue could post only 240 runs on the board, which was not enough for them to get the job done. The likes of Virat Kohli and KL Rahul, who were in sensational form leading to the final struggled to get going as Australian bowlers were all over the home team. 

Batting under lights was much easier as the ball was coming nicely to the bat. Despite so, Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah looked ruthless in the middle as the visiting team was 47/3 at one point. However, Travis Head’s masterclass helped Australia seal their sixth ODI World Cup title in Ahmedabad. Marnus Labushchagne supported him well with a gritty half-century while Glenn Maxwell hit the winning runs. 

Interestingly, there were a lot of talks regarding the pitch before and after the match. Ahead of the final, the Australian media claimed that the surface was tailor-made for the Indians to succeed while after the match, former skipper Ricky Ponting claimed that India’s plan to play on a slow surface ‘backfired’. 

Overall, five of India’s 11 matches in the tournament were labelled to be played ‘average’ pitch. Their opening game against Australia is one of them, alongside the one that was played against Pakistan in Ahmedabad, against England in Lucknow, against South Africa in Kolkata and the one that was used in the final.

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