Sporting wicket for India-Lanka 5th ODI: curator

The Feroz Shah Kotla wicket for the fifth ODI between India and Sri Lanka on Sunday will be a sporting one, the curator said on Friday.

updated: December 25, 2009 15:05 IST
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New Delhi:

The Feroz Shah Kotla wicket for the fifth and final ODI between India and Sri Lanka on Sunday will be a sporting one and not a featherbed with 280 plus expected to be a winning score, the curator said on Friday.

Curator Vijay Bahadur Mishra said the groundstaff have re-laid the pitch used during India-Australia ODI for Sunday's match and he had intentionally left a bit of grass on it as it will not only ensure good pace and carry but also help in binding it together.

"It is the same pitch which was used during the India-Australia match last month but the pitch will be much better than that match. It will be a sporting wicket and the team batting first should easily make 250 plus. I feel 280-plus is a winning score on this wicket," Mishra said.

"We started seeding on the wicket on November 8 and it is encouraging to see the amount of grass in a just a month's time. I have kept light grass on the wicket to bind it together. So, there is no chance of the wicket breaking up," he said.

The Kotla wicket recently came for sharp criticism during the inaugural Champions League T20 and the India-Australia one-dayer in October for its low and slow nature, but the curator said this time the bowlers will have some purchase from the pitch.

Mishra said with an early morning start and a bit of grass on the wicket, bowlers will get assistance in the initial stages of the match.

"The bowlers will get assistance from the wicket in the first one hour but the wicket will keep on improving as the match progresses. The pitch will play a little slow at the end. So, spinners will also benefit from it," Mishra said.

The Kotla curator was of the view that chasing would be a better proposition on this wicket.

"I feel the team batting second will have better advantage if they can restrict the opposition around 250," he said.