Pune Curator hints at BCCI ordering a turner for first Test
Updated - Feb 26, 2017 10:08 pm
The grand home season of the Indian cricket reached the final stage when the Australian side landed on the Indian soil for a 4-match Test series. The hosts were expected to steamroll the opposition but in a surprising turn of events, they were found wanting in the first Test at Pune. A lot of criticism went to the way of MCA Stadium, Pune pitch curator Panduram Salgaonkar.
Many criticized him for baking up a rank turner for such a crucial encounter. As per the recent reports in wahcricket, the former Maharashtra bowler has hinted that the pitch was tinkered at the last moment, and perhaps all against his will.
Prior to the game, Salgaonkar had promised that the match will be close contest spanning across all five days. However, as things turned out to be, India lost the match by 333 runs inside 3 days. The debut for Pune as the Test venue definitely did not have a fruitful beginning. The curator was later asked why the pitch behaved so oddly in the first Test, he replied with just two words.
He quoted, “Ask Daljit”. For the ones who don’t know, Daljit Singh is the chairman of the ground and the pitches committee of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The remark made by Salgaonkar is a clear indication that the pitch was definitely altered to suit the hosts. India had been in a rampaging form at home and had extended their unbeaten run at home to 19 Tests.
On most occasions, it was the spin that had worked for the host side. Hence, it comes as no surprise why a rank turner awaited the two participating teams in Pune. However, in doing so, India ended up digging up their own grave. Rookie spinner Steve O’Keefe scalped identical figures of 6/35 in each innings to see India bowled out for 105 and 107 in the two innings of the match. It will be interesting to see how the pitch at Bengaluru, the next Test venue, fares up.