Spotted this on Cricinfo’s scoreboard at the tea interval in the Bombay-Karnataka Ranji game:
Darshan: “Update From Mysore – My colleague just got back to office from the Gangotri glades & said the ground is jam packed with lots of Buzz, Hats off to the curator for making such a CRICKET FRIENDLY PITCH!”
Tells you all that talk about the soil in our country not being conducive to creating lively pitches is pure bunkum; tells you too that we have in India the expertise to make good pitches that offer testing conditions. This game might be worth keeping in mind, the next time we get apologists explaining why a track prepared for an international contest is so duh!
Watching the play, as much as I could between work, put me in mind of one other aspect. Structurally, the premier domestic competition should be just one rung below international standards — that is how you get to identify and hone talent that can make the progression to the next level
So we are watching the two top sides in the country this year, playing in conditions that ask questions of the batsmen — and the takeaway is, the batsmen are not equipped to answer those questions. No batsman on either side has managed to counter swing, negotiate seam, or look remotely comfortable against bounce.
And yet we wonder why, when we face tough conditions abroad, we struggle — because batsmen mollycoddled on designer batting wickets have neither the opportunity, nor the need, to develop those larger skills.
The board routinely pays lip service to the need to prepare good tracks for the domestic competition; as routinely, it ignores its own diktat and allows its pitches committee [now defunct] to create tracks guaranteed to burn bowlers out before their time, and to give batsmen a false sense of their own abilities.