India vs England: Ashwin unhappy with definition of 'good surface'
Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has slammed the critics for targeting the Motera pitch. His statement comes following the completion of pink-ball encounter at the new Narendra Modi Stadium, which got over inside two days. After the match, a number of cricket experts asserted that the pitch didn't promote fair competition. To counter this, Ashwin went on to question the definition of a "good surface".
'People with no Day/Night Test experience don't understand this facet'
"What about all the three pink-ball Test matches we've played, everything's ended within three days' time," said Ashwin. "I do not know what to say because when somebody just throws an opinion out there about the surface - and having had played the game - unfortunately maybe they've not played the pink-ball Test matches so they do not understand this facet of the game."
Shortest completed Test since second World War
The pink-ball Test, which got over inside two days, will be remembered as the shortest one ever played in India. This was also the shortest-ever completed Test since the second World War. A total of 30 wickets fell across two days, with Indian spinners Axar Patel, R Ashwin and Washington Sundar, bagging 19 of them. The fast-paced Test invited fresh criticism from former players.
The English batsmen failed to tackle spin
England collapsed on scores of 112 and 81 in their two innings, making an aggregate of 193 in the Test. This has become their lowest aggregate in India, and their second-lowest anywhere in the world since 1904. Even the Indian batsmen faltered in the match.
The Motera wicket drew several opinions
Following the completion of Test, Indian captain Virat Kohli described the wicket as "very good to bat on". He instead target the batsmen for "below-par batting". However, former England captain Alastair Cook felt, "Kohli's come out and defended the wicket almost as if it's a BCCI thing. It cannot possibly be the wicket." Notably, Andrew Strauss also reiterated that Kohli was "protecting" the groundsmen.
Ashwin questions the platitude
"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?" questioned Ashwin. "Come on! Who makes all these rules, we need to get over it and not talk about whatever picture you want to paint. If you're asking if it is a good Test surface."
He quotes the example of New Zealand series
"We went to NZ and both Tests got within five days. Five days for two Tests and nobody quoted it. There is a video that's doing the rounds where Virat in SA is saying that I'm not here to talk about the pitch," Ashwin added.
Nathan Lyon comes out in support
Recently, Ashwin's Australian counterpart Nathan Lyon came out in support of the Motera track. He said, "We play on seaming wickets around the world and get bowled out for 47, 60. Nobody ever says a thing." "But as soon as it starts spinning, everyone in the world seems to start crying about it. I don't get it. I'm all for it, it was entertaining,"