India vs England 2021: From Viv Richards to Michael Vaughan – For & Against The Motera Pitch Stokes Up Fiery Debate
India’s thumping ten-wicket win within two days in the Pink Ball Day and Night Test at Motera has led to the division of the cricketing world into two halves – one the usual India bashers who have been joined by some former players from Australia and England, the biased Western media and self apologetic Indians and the other which comprises of the likes of Virat Kohli, Sunil Gavaskar and other legends like Sir Vivian Richards.
With the fourth Test in Ahmedabad also expected to be played on a challenging pitch, this debate around the definition of a ‘good pitch’ and the ‘spirit of the game’ which for far too long has been owned by a few self-righteous individuals and organizations in first world countries will not die down any time soon.
We look at some of the interesting comments made for and against the motion.
THE MOTION: THE MOTERA PITCH FOR THE THIRD INDIA-ENGLAND TEST WAS UNPLAYABLE AND UNFIT FOR TEST CRICKET
FOR THE MOTION:
The longer powerful countries like India are allowed to get away with it the more toothless the ICC will look. India won the third Test but it was a shallow victory. In fact, there was no winners from that game at all
Virat Kohli has come out and defended the wicket as if it is almost a BCCI thing. Take the wicket out and blame the batsmen?
I’m really not bothered who wins when it’s a lottery like this. It’s just not a contest. Yes, techniques have been poor but if this pitch is acceptable to the ICC and there’s more of this there will be huge ramifications for world Test cricket
To say the pitch has no fault to play, I totally agree with Cooky. Kohli’s looking after the groundsman there to a certain degree
Finished in 2 days. Not sure if that’s good for Test cricket !If Kumble and Harbhajan bowled on these kind of wickets they would be sitting on a thousand and 800
It is not an ideal pitch. India would also have been in trouble if England had scored 200 in their first innings
It was not an ideal pitch for a Test match and even India collapsed to 145 in their first innings
2 days for a Test match to finish. Not the kind of pitch that cricket lovers would want but team India still dominated the pitch and Englishmen better
I am sure that off the back of this, things will get looked at by the ICC. It’s a real shame, it’s a fantastic stadium, there are 60,000 people come to watch a brilliant iconic Test match and I feel for them. They have come to watch Virat Kohli face Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad or Jack Leach, and watch Ashwin against our top batters like Ben Stokes. I almost feel like they have been robbed, instead they have had to watch me get wickets, which shouldn’t be the case
Andy Bunn (The Mirror)
India close to crossing boundaries of sportsmanship with pitch – it was NOT Test cricket. Making the most of home advantage is fair enough but this was not a pitch fit for a blue riband, five-day match after England lost to India in the shortest Test match for nearly 90 years
Sycld Berry (The Telegraph)
This unfit pitch was no advert for Test cricket – India should be docked World Championship points
AGAINST THE MOTION
It was a very good pitch to bat on – especially in the first innings – and it felt like the ball was coming on nicely with the odd-ball turning. It was just, I would say, below-par batting from both teams. Our bowlers were much more effective and that’s why we got the result
You just need to be slightly ahead at times and try and find ways to score runs. My intent was not just to survive but try and score runs as well, while respecting the good balls. On a track like this, you need to have a clear mindset
It was a challenging pitch, no question about it because the odd ball was turning, the other ones were coming straight. So how to keep your mind strong about hoping the variation was the key. India showed, particularly in the second innings, and even when Rohit Sharma batted in the first innings, that they could do it. On a pitch like this not every batsman is going to be successful, but even if two are successful, and, in India’s case both times it was Rohit Sharma, who really was the difference between the two teams
I thought the pitch was very challenging but not unplayable and England should have got more than 112 in the first innings which would have given them a sniff
Sir Geoffrey Boycott
There is nothing in the rules that says what type of pitch should be prepared. We had first choice of the surface and they were better than us. Simple
Sir Vivian Richards
I just felt that the ones who are moaning, in my opinion, should realise that there are times that you’re going to get a seaming track, a ball that is basically jumping off a good length and everyone thinks that’s a problem for batters. There are times batters sometimes cope with that. But now you’ve seen the other side, and this is why I think it was given the name Test match cricket, because of the test of the mind and will and everything else that goes with it when you’re competing.
And the complaints have been that the wicket is spinning too much and all that sorts of stuff. This is another side of the arc guys. People seem to forget that if you’re going to India, you should expect that. You are going to spin land. You should basically prepare yourself to know what you’re going to encounter rather than the moaning and groaning.
The batting from both teams was awful! The wicket wasn’t horrendous! It’s just that the batting was dreadful! 21/30 wickets were from straight balls! Nothing dangerous!
What makes a good surface? Who defines this? Seam on the first day and then bat well and then spin on the last two days? Come on!