International Cricket Council give verdict on Newlands pitch

Newlands pitch and groundsmanNewlands.

The International Cricket Council have rated the pitch used for last week’s second Test between South Africa and India at Newlands in Cape Town “unsatisfactory”.

The match ended inside four sessions after 23 wickets fell on day one.

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“The decision, made under the ICC pitch and outfield monitoring process, comes after Newlands hosted the shortest ever completed Test match, with 642 balls bowled in total,” read a statement from the ICC.

“ICC match referee Chris Broad submitted his report, which expressed the concerns of the match officials, and following the assessment, the Newlands pitch in Cape Town was deemed unsatisfactory.

“Broad said: ‘The pitch in Newlands was very difficult to bat on. The ball bounced quickly and sometimes alarmingly throughout the match, making it difficult to play shots. Several batters were hit on the gloves and many wickets also fell due to the awkward bounce.’

“In the ICC pitch and outfield monitoring process, if a pitch or outfield is rated as substandard, that venue is allocated certain demerit points. One demerit point is awarded to venues whose pitches and outfields are rated by the match referee as unsatisfactory.

“If a venue reaches six demerit points, it is suspended from hosting any international cricket for 12 months. The penalty is 24 months in case of 12 demerit points. These points remain active for a rolling five-year period. Cricket South Africa have 14 days to appeal against the sanction.”

The two-Test series ended in a one-all draw. South Africa won the first Test at the Wanderers in Johannesburg inside three days.

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