New Delhi: The pitch row which was an outcome to the Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s demand of a spinning track for third Test against England scheduled at Eden Gardens has certainly sparked a debate about the home team being given the preference of choosing a particular kind of pitch.

A question does arise after the demand of a specific track that is it not unethical, unfair to ask for a pitch as per your bench strength? There could be a little leniency for the home team but you need to be fair with your visitors too. This practice is actively endorsed round the globe from decades. The Caribbean’s prepare a green pitch as per their pacers while the sub continent teams prefer a spinning track as per their turners ability.

 If you are a world champion, you need to play the game as per the natural conditions rather than creating an artificial environment in which you are on a favourable side.  
It is also a well known fact that a demand specific pitch alone does not guarantee you of a win. If it was so, the hosts would never lose any game. But what happened in Mumbai Test is known to everyone. A humiliating defeat by ten wickets with a day remaining!

England tame India at Wankhade

The Mumbai track was also as per the demands of the home team but the ploy backfired and resulted into an embarrassment. The rival England turners followed the pitch behaviour and turned it into wickets in quick succession whereas the Indian spin attack was left struggling. Even though it was a turning track the English batsmen Alastair Cook and Kevin Pietersen batted with authority while the Indian top order collapsed like cards. So who is to be blamed now? The pitch or the ability?

 The demand for a specific track by the host teams is something similar to the demands made in your society for a male child even before the infant is delivered out. Why not wait for the baby to come in the world and then plan how to raise the kid whether it be a boy or a girl. In a similar way, why not prepare ourselves for any circumstances, any kind of pitch behaviour or any kind of bench strength. Why the World Champs have to dependent on a 22 yard pitch?

Abhay Shahi/JPN

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