Pune pitch rated ‘poor’ by match referee Broad

Dubai, Feb 28 (IANS) Chris Broad, who was match referee for the first Test between India and Australia at Pune, has rated the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) stadium pitch as “poor”, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced on Tuesday.

The first Test match of the four-match series finished inside three days with Australia claiming a 333-run victory as left-arm spinner Steve O’Keefe took six wickets in each innings.

“Broad, in accordance with Clause 3 of the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process, submitted his report to the ICC in which he expressed concern over the quality of the pitch,” ICC said in an official release.

“The report has been forwarded to the Board of Control for Cricket in India, which now has 14 days to provide its response,” it added.

The BCCI’s response will then be reviewed by ICC’s General Manager Geoff Allardice and Ranjan Madugalle from the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees.

The Pune pitch spun prodigiously from ball one in a match dominated by spin bowling which came back to hunt down the hosts, who were rolled for 105 and 107 in their two innings inside three days.

Following the match, Australia captain Steve Smith, who made a brilliant second innings century, said the turning track played into the visitors’ hands.

According to media reports, some members of the Indian team management had allegedly interfered on the pitch condition before the match.

Former India Test spinner Harbhajan Singh slammed the Pune pitch.

–IANS

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