SA vs IND: The ICC on Monday rated Newlands Pitch in Cape Town as “unsatisfactory” following a low-scoring second Test between India & South Africa. The decision was made under the ICC Pitch & Outfield Monitoring process after the conclusion of the second Test between India & South Africa which turned into the shortest match in the history of the Test with just 642 balls bowled in total.
Mohammed Siraj’s 6-15 restricted South Africa to just 55 in the first innings while India managed a 98-run lead on the back of their 153 with contributions from Rohit Sharma (39), Shubman Gill (36), and Virat Kohli (46). A stunning century from Aiden Markram proved inadequate in the third innings as India was set a target of 79, thanks to a six-wicket haul by Jasprit Bumrah. India won by seven wickets on day two.
ICC Match referee Chris Broad submitted his report expressing disappointment with the Match Officials. After a detailed assessment by an independent body termed Newlands pitch in Cape Town as “unsatisfactory”.
“The Newlands pitch posed a considerable challenge for batsmen. The ball exhibited swift and occasionally unsettling bounces throughout the game, complicating shot execution. Numerous batters faced discomfort as the ball struck their gloves, resulting in a significant number of wickets being lost due to the unpredictable bounce,” he explained.
SA vs IND: What is the ICC Pitch & Outfield Monitoring process?
In the ICC Pitch & Outfield Monitoring Process, if a pitch or outfield is termed as substandard, that venue is allocated certain demerit points. One demerit Point is awarded to venues whose pitches & outfields are rated by the match referee as unsatisfactory. On reaching six demerits Points, the venue is suspended from hosting any International fixture for 12 months. The penalty is 24 months in case of 12 demerit points.
These points remain active for a rolling five-year period. Meanwhile, CSA has 14 days to appeal against the sanction. Talking about the fixture, the match was won by India to level the series by 1-1. Though they can’t turn their fortunes by winning their maiden Test series on South African soil, they managed to save themselves from humiliation by winning the second Test.