CHENNAI: The Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) central zone curator Taposh Chatterjee has been relieved of his duties to oversee the pitch preparation for the second Test starting on Saturday. The move comes days after Indian team lost the first Test by a massive 227-run margin on a flat pitch that came under severe criticism from the team.
Right through the first Test, India had expressed their displeasure about the pitch which didn’t provide any assistance to pacers or spinners on the first two days. At the end of the Test, pacer Ishant Sharma called it a road.
While it indeed produced a result with the pitch deteriorating considerably over the last couple of days, the toss played a big role in the outcome of the result.
India felt by the time they batted in the first innings it started to deteriorate, but none of their dismissals were caused by the pitch as they conceded a huge first innings lead.
However on Day 5, Jack Leach found plenty of sharp turn and bounce and even James Anderson found the length where the odd ball was keeping low.
With just three-day gap between the two Tests, Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) had begun preparation for the second Test weeks ago.
It is understood that the last minute changes to cut the grass for the first Test took life out of the surface, hence it ended up being on the slower side.
With India not in a position to lose another Test as it would end all their hopes of qualifying for the World Test Championship final, the indications are that the second Test pitch will be played on a pitch that will take toss out of the equation.
The preparations are now being overseen by local curator V Ramesh Kumar and sources in the TNCA revealed that a turner is being rolled out for the second Test which will be to the liking of the Indian team.
Unlike the first Test where the pitch started to break-up only by Day 4, it could happen a lot quickly in the second Test as the groundsmen have been told to stop watering. Similarly this Test may not be a high-scoring one where spinners will have a big role to play.
While sources in the BCCI revealed that Chatterjee has been moved to oversee pitch preparation for Vijay Hazare Trophy matches in Indore and Jaipur, the tournament starts only on February 20.