Following an appeal by the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the rating of pitch used for the third Test of the ICC World Test Championship series between India and Australia at the Holkar Cricket Stadium in Indore has been changed from poor to below average, the governing body said on Monday.
The decision was taken pursuant to the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process.
“Having reviewed footage of the Test match, the ICC appeal panel, consisting of Wasim Khan, ICC General Manager – Cricket, and Roger Harper, ICC Men’s Cricket Committee Member, were of the opinion that, while the guidelines had been followed by the Match Referee in accordance with Appendix A of the Pitch Monitoring Process, it was deemed that there was not enough excessive variable bounce to warrant the poor rating. Instead, the appeal panel concluded that the pitch should be rated as below average,” the ICC said in a statement.
In his original assessment, match referee Chris Broad had said: “The pitch, which was very dry, did not provide a balance between bat and ball, favouring spinners from the start. The fifth ball of the match broke through the pitch surface and continued to occasionally break the surface providing little or no seam movement and there was excessive and uneven bounce throughout the match.”
While India suffered a rare home defeat, skipper Rohit Sharma said he was bored of talking about India’s pitches. India went on to win the series 2-1.
Consequently, 1 demerit point has been awarded to the venue for the “below average” rating. Three and five demerit points will be awarded to venues whose pitches are marked as poor and unfit, respectively. Demerit points will remain active for a rolling five-year period. When a venue accumulates five demerit points (or crosses that threshold), it will be suspended from hosting any international cricket for a period of 12 months, while a venue will be suspended from staging any international cricket for 24 months when it reaches the threshold of 10 demerit points.