WTC Final, India vs New Zealand: Southampton pitch to have pace, bounce, carry, says curator

WTC Final, India vs New Zealand: Southampton pitch to have pace, bounce, carry, says curator
x

WTC Final, India vs New Zealand: Southampton pitch to have pace, bounce, carry, says curator

Highlights

The Southampton groundsman Simon Lee, who is preparing the pitch for the inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) final has said he aims to produce a wicket that has a good pace and bounce.

The Southampton groundsman Simon Lee, who is preparing the pitch for the inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) final has said he aims to produce a wicket that has a good pace and bounce.

The WTC final is set to be played between India and New Zealand, starting June 18 at the Rose Bowl Stadium.

"Pitch preparation for this Test is a little simpler as we are a neutral venue, we are guided by the ICC, but we all want is a good pitch that offers an even contest between the teams. For me personally, I just want to get something out that has some pace, bounce and carry in the pitch. "It can be a hard thing to do in England as the weather doesn't help us most of the time, but the forecast in the build-up is good with a lot of sun, so we are hopeful that we'll get some pace and a hard pitch without over-rolling it and killing it," Lee told ESPNCricinfo.

The groundsman went on to say that he wants the fast bowlers to be in the contest throughout the game. "Pace just makes red-ball cricket exciting, I'm a cricket fan and I want to produce a pitch where the cricket lovers have to watch every ball in case they miss something, be that some class batting or an amazing spell of bowling.

A maiden over can be quite exciting if it's a battle of skill between both bowler and batter. So, yeah, if we can get some pace and bounce in the pitch, but not too one-sided towards seam movement, we'll be happy," Lee added further.

Meanwhile, both India and New Zealand boost quality spinners too. While India are expected to include spin all-rounders Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja in their playing XI for the upcoming WTC final, New Zealand could pick one of Ajaz Patel and Mitchell Santner.

In the same interview, Lee went on to say that the spinners will also come into play at some point of the summit clash in Southampton.

"As I said, the forecast is looking okay, the pitches dry out very quickly here as we do have some sand mixed into our cricket loam, which helped it hold together when the pitches were re-laid some 10 years ago, but it can help it spin as well.

To get to that point we'll need the seamers to bowl, some runs scored, and make some rough along the way. The pitch will always get talked about a lot, but you need the players to play their part to make a good game. So if we produce a pitch that allows the players to show their skills at the top level and we have an entertaining game for the fans, we will be more than satisfied," the curator added.

New Zealand recently reclaimed the top spot in the ICC Team Rankings, pushing India to No. 2, following their 1-0 series victory over England. It was

the BlackCaps' first Test series win on the English soil since 1999. Captain Kane Williamson and ace spinner Santner missed the second Test due to injuries but will return in time for the WTC final.

Show Full Article
Print Article
Next Story
More Stories
ADVERTISEMENTS