Time for a rant. “Son of a pitch,” says Raj in Edinburgh. “Getting tired of the pitch debates. A Day 1 green seaming wicket, indistinguishable from the square, making the batters jump around in Headingley, Dunedin or Kingsmead somehow doesn’t attract the same pejoratives that a so-called dust bowl does.
“It is ‘Test’ cricket, isn’t it? About being tested – in terms of skill, courage and endurance – in different conditions around the world? This IMO is a fairer pitch than the first Test, as the ball has been turning from the outset, negating the impact of the toss (unlike the first Test, where the toss made a big difference), and allowing the team with the better batting and spinning skills to come out on top. The Sharma-Rahane partnership and Pant’s efforts were outstanding examples of batting skill and courage, but there was no way India should have been allowed to get 300 plus here; England’s lack of resources (and perhaps selection/rotation errors) were exposed.
“The Indians (seamers included) have shown how to bowl on this wicket but the Pope-Foakes partnership also made the pitch look manageable, didn’t it? I’d much rather have a wicket like this (or a green seamer for that matter) which brings the bowlers into it, allows class to rise to the top, has something for everyone and makes for great entertainment, the Guardian OBO of pitches, as it were, than the roads that get called good cricketing pitches – the equivalent of bland scores only ball-by-ball commentary you get on other sites.” Ha. Is that a case of assault and flattery?