New pitches need to breathe life into test match cricket

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Football News

The discussion over the state of Test Cricket pitches has raged over the past couple of years. There was a time when you watched a test match and you were bound to know what type of contest you would get.

In Australia, pitches in Perth and Brisbane would have a steep bounce from day one while in Sydney it would be spinners paradise. Whereas in Melbourne, you would get a pitch that suited both bat and ball.

New Zealand and England's pitches are most commonly swing bowlers' paradise but in India, the ball would turn sharply.


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To be fair to curators in India and England, those wickets have stayed pretty much true along the way as witnessed in the India series against South Africa and the 2015 Ashes series - both series Test matches were over in two or three days.

Many purists may not agree, but at least you got to see the bowlers have a say in the match, which is certainly not the case in many parts of the world.

Most recently, talk has been surrounding the cricket pitches in New Zealand. Before the series against Australia, New Zealand coach Mike Hesson demanded the pitches to be as green as possible. This was to evoke any demons in the Aussies minds from the Ashes series.

The state of the pitches in New Zealand has been bemoaned by a number of former players during the series who say the pitches have been flat for a few years.

The on-going situation of Australia's pitches has been well documented and it was highlighted most starkly in the Perth Test match where there were 1712 runs scored and only 28 wickets taken across the five days.

The only Test where the ball won over the bat was in the day-night Test in Adelaide where the pink ball was used. The game was over in under three days, however, drew huge crowds and TV audiences.

The danger in continuing to produce flat pitches means that fans will switch off from Test cricket and players will head to the riches of the Twenty20 circuit. One hopes that cricket authorities can wave goodbye to the past while looking ahead to the future.

There is no reason why Test cricket can't have a revival, but it needs everyone on the same page.

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England cricket
New Zealand cricket
Australia cricket
Kevin Pietersen
India cricket

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