Kohli knows battle between bat and ball will decide the Ranchi match

By Gaurav Joshi

Ranchi:   Ever since the first picture of the Ranchi pitch started to circulate on social media the criticism started to blow out of proportions. It had an abnormal dark look and the water that was sprinkled gave it a look that was termed as ”˜ugly’.

Standing pitch side and keeping a close eye on the proceedings curator S.B Singh dismisses the term ”˜ugly’ by referring to old Hindi song ”˜Dil Ko Dekho Chehra Na Dekho’ –   Look at the soul don’t just judge by the look. He explains the uncharacteristic dark colour is because of the high percentage of clay content.

Mr Singh, is no ordinary curator, he boasts ample of knowledge and in a clam manner explains the mechanism.  His passion for the job is best illustrated by an eight page report he has written about pitch making which features inputs from none other than MS Dhoni.

Recently, he spent six hours with MS Dhoni discussing the characteristics of local pitches and the ones the former Indian captain had experienced during his career.

Asked about the discussion, Mr Singh told reporters that Dhoni had explained the importance understanding the local conditions and not just implementing something that did not suit Ranchi.

Given the way the pitch crumbled in Pune, there is plenty of pressure on the Ranchi curator to ensure the pitch doesn’t get a ”˜poor’ rating from the ICC.   But while Mr Singh, does not confirm how the pitch will behave over the course of the Test match, he echoes his technical jargon, which seems to indicate that due to the level of silt and the high level of clay content, it would be difficult for pitch to powder and crumble.

The minute you ask him about the amount of water that has been sprinkled on the pitch, he once again goes into his scientific bubble and stats the amount of water spread on the pitch in accordance to the perspiration of the pitch, which has been monitored for the last 10-15 days.

One man that did not even bother going within 30 meters of the pitch was Virat Kohli. The Indian captain turned around and preferred to focus on training rather than walking with Anil Kumble to inspect the 22 yard pitch.   Perhaps Kohli is aware that it will be the battle between bat and ball that will decide the fate of the match and not the pitch.


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