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Gulu's Blog: Bowlers have upper hand
by Gulu Ezekiel
Oct 24, 2006
This is certainly proving to be a Champions Trophy full of surprises and shock results.

A major factor in this appears to be the pitches which are under-prepared, even sub-standard.

Not that the bowlers are complaining! Who would have guessed that after the first 10 days of the main event, the highest total so far is Pakistan’s 253 for 6 in beating Sri Lanka at Jaipur with 11 balls to spare? And that on Indian tracks where even chasing 350-plus appeared par for the course all these years.

The fact that the conditions have given the bowlers the upper hand also means that teams batting second have struggled to chase down small totals.

South Africa flopped while chasing New Zealand’s 195 at Mumbai. And now the same South Africans prevented Sri Lanka from scoring 220 to win at Jaipur.

There is some panic at the Brabourne stadium and even the local officials were heard saying the final should be shifted out of Mumbai. The ICC responded by flying in their pitch expert Andy Atkinson who promptly poured glue over the surface to make it bind.

Whatever may be the cause for the conditions, one thing for sure—it has made for enthralling and unpredictable cricket.

 
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