CHENNAI: The International Cricket Council (ICC) has officially warned the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for preparing a substandard pitch at Kanpur for the Test match between India and South Africa in April.

The ICC has also recommended that the BCCI take remedial action to ensure the venue isn’t a repeat offender. The BCCI Pitch Consultant, Daljit Singh, will be asked to assist the process.

The BCCI has accepted the warning.

“I can assure everyone that we will take all steps necessary to ensure this does not happen in the future,” BCCI Secretary, Niranjan Shah, said.

The decision is the completion of the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process introduced in 2006 to ensure international cricket is played in conditions of a high standard. The sanctions the ICC can impose range from a warning or a fine to a suspension of international status in the case of repeated offences.

In his report submitted after the completion of the Test which saw 32 wickets fall in three days, match referee Roshan Mahanama had termed the wicket “poor”, “too dry”, and having “considerable turn and variable bounce from the first day.”

Written report

The ICC asked the BCCI for a written report on the condition of the surface including any extenuating circumstances which may have existed. Following the receipt of the BCCI’s report, ICC General Manager (Cricket), David Richardson, and ICC chief match referee, Ranjan Madugalle, considered the evidence, including video footage of the match, before passing judgment.

Detailing the ICC’s decision, Richardson said: “We have come to a decision that the pitch prepared for the match should be rated as ‘poor.’ We have taken into consideration the explanations offered by the BCCI and we have noted that there is no previous record of a sub-standard pitch being prepared in Kanpur. It would appear that the poor quality of the pitch prepared for this Test was due to inadequate preparation procedures.”

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