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Official warning from ICC ahead of World Cup opener

Source - New Zealand Herald

The venue for the New Zealand's opening Twenty20 World Cup match has been hit with an official warning from world cricket authorities over the poor state of the pitch.

Nagpur's VCA Stadium, set to host the Black Caps' World Cup game against India on March 13, has come in for criticism after hosting the recent third test of the Freedom Series between hosts India and South Africa.

India took a comfortable 124-run victory inside three days with spin bowlers snaring 33 of the 40 wickets, while no batsman managed a half-century.

The Daily Mail report that South African captain Hashim Amla described the pitch as one of the toughest he had encountered, and former New Zealand captain Jeff Crowe judged the surface as "poor".

A statement today from the International Cricket Council said:


Jamtha Stadium, Nagpur, has been given an official warning under the ICC Pitch Monitoring Process following the third Test between India and South Africa.

"The sanction took into consideration the fact that there had been no concerns about the performance of the pitch after any of the other international matches played at this venue.

"In reaching the verdict, the ICC agreed with the 'poor' rating given to the pitch by Jeff Crowe, the match referee for the Nagpur Test played from 25-27 November, who observed that the pitch did not allow a fair contest between bat and the ball."

The onus is now on Nagpur to improve the standard of the pitch ahead of the T20 tournament.

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