New Delhi: India captain Rohit Sharma minced no words against the International Cricket Council (ICC) and the match referees when it comes to rating the pitches as he smells double standards. After the second Test ended in just less than two days (shortest ever in the history of the game), Rohit targeted those who speak a lot negative about the Indian pitches.
For the record, the India vs South Africa second Test match lasted only 107 overs. This was also the third instance India were involved in a Test match that lasted only two days. “I mean, we saw what happened in this match, how the pitch played and stuff like that,” Rohit said.
“I honestly don’t mind playing on pitches like this. As long as everyone keeps their mouth shut in India and don’t talk too much about Indian pitches, honestly. Because you come here [in Test cricket] to challenge yourself. Yes, it is dangerous. It is challenging.
“So, and when people come to India, it is again pretty challenging as well. Look, when you are here to play Test cricket, we talk about Test cricket, the ultimate prize, Test cricket being the pinnacle and stuff like that. I think it’s important that we also stand by it,” added the Indian skipper.
There have been several instances when the Indian pitches were criticized, the latest during the ODI World Cup 2023. “When you are put up against, a challenge like that, you come and face it. That’s what happens in India, but, in India on day one, if the pitch starts turning, people start talking about ‘Puff of dust! Puff of dust!’ There’s so much crack here on the pitch. People are not looking at that.
“I think it’s important that we stay neutral everywhere we go,” Rohit said. “Especially the match referees. You know, some of these match referees need to keep their eye on how they rate pitches. It’s quite important.” He is yet to believe that the ODI World Cup final game pitch in Ahmedabad was rated below average despite Australia’s Travis Head getting a hundred.
“I still can’t believe that the World Cup final pitch was rated below average. A batsman got a hundred there in the final. How can that be a poor pitch? So these are the things the ICC, the match referees, they need to look into and start rating pitches based on what they see, not based on the countries. I think that’s quite important.
“So I hope they keep their ears open, they keep their eyes open and look into those aspects of the game. Honestly, I’m all for pitches like this. We want to challenge playing on pitches like this. We pride ourselves playing on pitches like this. Uh, but all I wanna say is be neutral,” he added.