Written byParth Dhall
The uncertain game of cricket is ruled by the scrupulous 22 yards.
A cricket pitch is the playing-arena where the two teams battle it out.
Both the state and form of a pitch have a direct impact on the course of the match.
Although the dimensions of every playing-strip are similar, the difference lies in its nature.
Let us decode different types of decks.
The dust bowls or dusty tracks are usually the wickets with absolutely no grass cover.
Such pitches constitute sand due to less rolling.
The soft and unrolled surface brings spin into play here, turning them into rank-turners.
Fast bowlers garner less benefit as compared to spinners with it offering minimal seam movement.
Playing shots is generally easier on this kind of strip.
Hard tracks are lively for both batsmen and bowlers.
Fast bowlers reap dividends more often than not, owing to the steep bounce.
Batsmen also play on the merit here.
Cracks open up on a hard pitch after a while and this helps the seamers deviate the ball.
Remember how Mitchell Johnson destroyed England with bouncers in 2014?
Expect a high-scoring match on a flat wicket, for it is called a bowler's graveyard.
Such decks are also deemed 'dead' wherein the batsmen tend to play on the up.
There is no help for the bowlers whatsoever, who only expect a judgement error by the batsmen.
However, spinners may make a difference here by luring the batters to play the shots.
A green-top wicket is regarded as a paradise for fast bowlers.
The extra cover of grass on the pitch gives the seamers an upper hand as they extract more movement and bounce.
This also induces swing and seam movement, which makes the ball skid off the surface.
The batsmen tend to play late here in order to tackle the swing.
A damp wicket contains more moisture content than the other decks.
As a result, the ball slows down after pitching and also keeps low.
Hence, the batsmen have to adjust according to the pace of the ball, playing it late.
Extra moisture slightly above the surface also fetches swing to seamers.
Spinners also make use of low bounce to deceive the batsmen.
There are a number of decks around the world with renowned attributes.
For instance, the WACA in Australia still offers the fastest wicket and hard bounce.
The wickets in England and New Zealand are well suited for swing bowling, owing to the atmospheric pressure.
South African tracks, time and again, produce uneven bounce, while spin plays a pivotal role on the subcontinent strips.
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