The manager of the Ekana Cricket Stadium in Lucknow was fired after creating a poor playing surface for the second T20I against New Zealand, which India barely won. Despite the victory, the Indian captain criticized the pitch as inadequate. New Zealand struggled to score 99 runs, and India struggled to chase the low target on a difficult, spinning pitch.
"The curator has been removed and replaced by Sanjeev Kumar Agarwal who is a very experienced curator. We will turn things around in a month.
A lot of domestic cricket was already played on all the centre wickets ahead of the T20I and the curator should have left one or two strips for an international game. The surface was overused and due to the bad weather, there was not enough (time) to prepare a fresh wicket," a UPCA source told PTI.
Agarwal, who previously created pitches in Bangladesh before being let go in October 2022, has been assigned to fix the pitch-making issues. He will collaborate with experienced BCCI curator Taposh Chatterjee, according to the source.
"To be honest, it was a shocker of a wicket. Both the games we have played on so far. I don't mind difficult wickets. I am all up for that, but these two wickets are not made for T20. Somewhere down the line, the curators or the grounds that we are going to play in should make sure they prepare the pitches earlier," Hardik had said after the six-wicket win in Lucknow.
Pitch Report For 3rd ODI
The pitch at Ahmedabad is not really a high scoring one, with the average first-innings score being 152, dropping down to 145 in the 2nd innings. Set batters have been seen to play shots, but it is difficult for new batters to just come in and blast away. Spinners and slow bowlers get help from this deck.
The last game of the series will be played at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad
Also Read: IND vs NZ, 3rd T20I: Burning questions for Hardik Pandya's Team India ahead of series decider