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IND vs SA, 2nd Test: Rohit Sharma takes aim at ICC match referees over alleged bias in pitch ratings (WATCH)

Indian cricket captain Rohit Sharma questions the fairness of ICC match referees in evaluating pitches, emphasising the need for neutrality.

cricket IND vs SA, 2nd Test: Rohit Sharma takes aim at ICC match referees over alleged bias in pitch ratings osf
First Published Jan 5, 2024, 9:17 AM IST

Following the conclusion of the second Test against South Africa at Newlands, Cape Town, Indian cricket team captain Rohit Sharma expressed his dissatisfaction, primarily directed towards the scrutiny Indian pitches face, particularly due to their spinning characteristics, without directly criticising the Newlands pitch.

Despite not directly blaming the Newlands pitch, Sharma strongly condemned the criticism Indian pitches endure, especially for their spinning conditions. Emphasizing the importance of embracing challenges in Test cricket, he urged players to face such situations head-on.

Sharma questioned the neutrality of ICC match referees, citing former England opener Chris Broad's involvement in the two-Test series as an example. He asserted the need for impartiality among match referees and criticized the rating system, particularly referencing ICC match referee Andy Pycroft's "average" rating for the ODI World Cup final pitch in Ahmedabad.

Expressing disbelief at the World Cup final pitch being labeled 'below average,' Sharma called for a reevaluation of the criteria used for pitch ratings. He stressed the importance of assessing pitches objectively based on their characteristics rather than favouring or discriminating against hosting countries.

In a sarcastic tone, Sharma expressed his curiosity about the parameters match referees use to rate pitches, highlighting the distinct conditions of venues like Mumbai, Bengaluru, Cape Town, and Centurion. He urged the ICC and match referees to adopt a more discerning approach and emphasised his support for pitches like the one at Newlands while advocating for impartiality in pitch assessments.

Also Read: Virat Kohli, Mohammed Shami and Shubman Gill nominated for the ICC Men's ODI Cricketer of Year award

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