Netizens express a spectrum of opinions as ICC declares Cape Town’s Newlands pitch ‘unsatisfactory’


The International Cricket Council (ICC) has deemed the Newlands pitch in Cape Town, South Africa, as ‘unsatisfactory’ following the conclusion of the second Test between India and South Africa. Despite India securing a seven-wicket victory within five sessions, the match marked the shortest completed Test in history with only 642 balls bowled.

Rohit Sharma’s critique

India’s win leveled the two-match series, but Captain Rohit Sharma expressed his reservations about the fairness of pitch assessments, targeting both experts and the ICC, particularly in the context of conditions in India compared to SENA countries.

Match referee’s Chris Broad assessment

The ICC, acknowledging the pitch issues at Newlands, has rated it ‘unsatisfactory’ after match referee Chris Broad submitted his report. The decision was reached through the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process. Broad highlighted the challenges faced by batters due to the quick and unpredictable bounce on the pitch, leading to discomfort and awkward dismissals.

“The pitch in Newlands was very difficult to bat on. The ball bounced quickly and sometimes alarmingly throughout the match, making it difficult to play shots. Several batters were hit on the gloves and many wickets also fell due to the awkward bounce,”  Broad said in a statement released by the ICC.

Demerit points and potential suspension

In accordance with ICC rules, the Newlands pitch accrues one demerit point for its ‘unsatisfactory’ rating. A venue faces suspension from hosting international cricket for a year if it accumulates six demerit points and a two-year suspension for 12 demerit points. The demerit points remain active for a rolling period of five years.

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CSA’s appeal window

Cricket South Africa (CSA), as the home board, has a 14-day window to appeal against the ICC’s rating. Meanwhile, netizens and cricket experts have expressed a diverse range of opinions, contributing to the ongoing discourse on pitch conditions and their impact on the game.

Here’s how Twitter reacted:

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