Colombo (News 1st) - India has come under fire for switching pitches for today's (Wednesday) Cricket World Cup 2023 semi-final between India and New Zealand in Mumbai.
The International Cricket Council's independent pitch consultant, Andy Atkinson, has raised doubts over the selection of the pitch.
The match was initially set to be played on Pitch Number Seven in Wankhede Stadium, which is a new pitch, but has been switched to Pitch Number 6 on which two other matches have already been played during this tournament.
India usually prefers slower, lower-bounce pitches that favour their trio of elite spin bowlers Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav and Ravichandran Ashwin, and would be less favourable for New Zealand's seam bowlers.
Atkinson oversees preparation at global tournaments to ensure they provide an equitable playing surface for both teams.
“As a result of these actions, one must speculate if this will be the first ever ICC CWC final to have a pitch which has been specifically chosen and prepared to their stipulation at the request of the team management and/or the hierarchy of the home nation board,” Atkinson wrote in an email published by The Daily Mail.
“Or will it be selected or prepared without favouritism for either of the sides competing in the match in the usual manner, and unquestionably because it is the usual pitch for the occasion?” he wrote.