The India vs Australia series ended with an Indian victory at Dharmasala. It was good all round cricket that was played and both the teams were happy with the pitch that was on offer. Steve Smith the Australian captain scored a century in the first innings as KL Rahul played good knocks in both the innings.
While the playing surface in Pune for the opening Test was under prepared, to say the least, the Bangalore pitch was also declared ‘average’ by the ICC which India won by 75 runs. The pitch for the 3rd Test was on the slower side which produced a draw after Peter Handscomb and Shaun Marsh batted resolutely on the final day to defy the hosts.
Meanwhile the HPCA pitch curator Sunil Chauhan expressed his disappointment over the India team not thanking him to dish out a good wicket which yielded a victory for Team India.
“I’m hearing that everyone has liked the pitch, but no one has bothered to call me to say thank you. It’s my job to prepare a good, fair wicket and I will continue to do so, but I just felt a small ‘thank you’ would have been a kind gesture from the Indian team,” Chauhan was quoted as saying by Mid- day.
“I thought it could have offered maybe 10 to 20 percent more seam movement. But the bounce was good and the turn was okay so I’m happy that a good, competitive Test match was played. This was our first Test at HPCA, so the pressure was on me to deliver a good, true wicket and I’m glad I could live up to expectations,” Chauhan added.
BCCI chief curator Daljit Singh was criticized for the Pune wicket which was rated “poor” by the ICC and the Bengaluru wicket was also rated under par by the main cricketing body. He also explained the uniqueness of the soil which went into the making of Dharamsala pitch. “The soil that was used to make this pitch is from a village in Ludhiana. Even for the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium in Mohali, we used to source the same mud and that’s why our track has also traditionally offered good bounce and carry”, said Daljit.
“So, PCA is unable to source this soil anymore. However, HPCA has smartly collected a lot of stock and stored it in a hangar at one of their grounds, so they still have stock. But from next season, they too will have to start looking at another mud source. I’ve been in Dharamsala since five days before the Test, working closely with local curator Chauhan, who has done a great job,” Daljit further added.