The pitch in Rawalpindi that was used during the first Test between Pakistan and England has received a ‘below average’ rating from the ICC.
While a host of batting records were shattered during the opening Test of the series that England managed to win by 74 runs, the pitch used in Rawalpindi came under fire for providing bowlers with very little assistance throughout the five-day contest.
PCB chairman Ramiz Raja labelled the pitch as ’embarrassing’ and Andy Pycroft of the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Match Referees agreed with his prognosis.
Pycroft released his findings on Tuesday and the Rawalpindi surface received its second consecutive rating of ‘below average’, following the same rating that was given to the pitch after Pakistan’s Test against Australia in March.
“It was a very flat pitch which gave almost no assistance to any type of bowler,” Pycroft said.
“That was the main reason why batters scored very fast and both sides posted huge totals.
“The pitch hardly deteriorated during the course of the match.
“Since there was very little in it for the bowlers, I found the pitch to be ‘below average’ as per the ICC guidelines.”
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It means the venue has now received two demerit points from consecutive Tests under the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process and could be in danger of being suspended from hosting any international cricket if more demerit points are lost.
Demerit points remain active for a rolling five-year period and when a venue accumulates five demerit points it is suspended from staging any international cricket for a period of 12 months.