New York wicket raising concerns after second low scoring game

New York wicket raising concerns after second low scoring game


Ireland coach said surface for T20 World Cup game against India didn't live up to expectations.

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NEW YORK (AFP) – Ireland coach Heinrich Malan said the surface for Tuesday's T20 World Cup game against India didn't live up to expectations after pundits slammed it as "dangerous."

India won the Group A game by eight wickets after they bowled Ireland out for just 96.

Malan didn't lay blame for the defeat on the uneven bounce on the recently laid surface at Nassau County Cricket ground in New York state, but was clearly far from impressed.

"When you play the game you need a really good surface or as good as surfaces you can get and unfortunately what we've seen over the last couple games just doesn't necessarily live up to that. So hopefully, over the next day or so it can hopefully flatten out a little bit and we can see some good cricket come Friday," he said.

It was the second straight low-scoring game at the new venue after Monday saw Sri Lanka bowled out for 77 as South Africa won with 22 balls to spare.

"I think we just want to see good cricket, don't we? It's the pinnacle of our event and it doesn't have to be 200 play all the time, it just needs to be an equal contest and I think if you look at today it is debatable where that was," said Malan.

Andy Flower, the former Zimbabwe player and ex-England team director, told Cricinfo that he felt the surface was not up to scratch.

"I've got to say that is not a good surface to play an international match on. It's bordering on dangerous," said Flower.

"You saw the ball bouncing from a length both ways, so skidding low occasionally but in the main bouncing unusually high and striking people on the thumb, on the gloves, on the helmet and making life very, very difficult for any batsman," he added.

Flower credited India's pace bowlers for taking full advantage of the conditions but said it had been tough on Ireland.

"The Indian quicks were good enough to exploit it, you've got to give that to them. They kept their game plan really simple, they hit the deck hard on a good length and that was all you needed to do," he said.

"It proved very, very tricky batting conditions for any side, let alone a smaller cricketing nation like Ireland taking on the giants of India".

India batting coach Vikram Rathour said it had been a "challenging wicket" but felt his team had adapted.

"We played a practice game here. So, we knew what to expect. So, it is what it is. We need to find a way to deal with it and I think we have enough skills in the team and enough experience in the team to deal with it. We should be fine," he said.

"I am sure it has been challenging for the curators or for ICC to create something here in the past six to seven months or whatever time they have taken. It was never going to be easy," he said.

Ireland will face Canada at the Long Island ground on Friday while India take on rivals Pakistan at the venue on Sunday in the marquee contest of the group stage.