Wanderers pitch gets 'poor' rating, escapes suspension

The Wanderers pitch has received three demerit point and been rated by “poor” by the match referee, Andy Pycroft.

Umpires, Aleem Dar and Ian Gould inspect the pitch during the course of play in the third Test at the Wanderers.   -  Getty Images

The Wanderers Stadium pitch for the third and final Test between India and South Africa has been rated "poor" by ICC match referee Andy Pycroft.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Tuesday announced that according to the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process, the pitch has received three demerit point.

The demerit points will remain active for five years and if during this period the venue reaches the thresold of five demerit points, then Wanderers Stadium will be suspended from hosting any international matches for 12 months.

Pycroft's report was forwarded to Cricket South Africa and said: “The pitch prepared for the final Test was a poor one. It had excessively steep and unpredictable bounce, and excessive seam movement.

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“It deteriorated quickly as the match progressed, which made batting extremely difficult and hazardous, resulting in the medical staff from both the sides having to come onto the field of play multiple times to treat their batsmen.

“As the on-field umpires are also responsible for the players’ safety, they expressed concerns about the behavior of the pitch, and debated after day three if it was appropriate to continue the match. In the end, the umpires made the decision to continue and the Test reached its natural conclusion on day four. However, there was still excessive variable bounce and seam movement when the Test match ended.”

After conceding the three-match series, India clawed back to register a 63-run consolation win in the third Test over the host in tough batting conditions.

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