Home Cricket Tom Moody Slams Trinidad Pitch After T20 World Cup Semi-final, “Not Fit...

Tom Moody Slams Trinidad Pitch After T20 World Cup Semi-final, “Not Fit for International Cricket”

99
0

Former Australia cricketer Tom Moody gave a harsh critique of the pitch at the Brian Lara Cricket Stadium in Trinidad used for the first semi-final of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 between South Africa and Afghanistan. Moody stated that the surface was unfit for any cricket match. The pitch offered excessive lateral movement for fast bowlers and inconsistent bounce, with some balls flying off the surface while others stayed low. Despite these challenging conditions, South Africa displayed their best form, bowling out Afghanistan for just 56 and chasing down the total in 8.5 overs to secure their spot in the final at Barbados on Sunday.

Moody’s Critique

“I don’t think you’d want to see it in any game, to be honest with you,” said Moody. “You want a fair contest between bat and ball, and I’m not advocating that we need surfaces where you score 200 runs, but you need consistent bounce. That is the most important thing. Any batter would agree that consistent bounce is crucial.”

“If you’ve got one ball hitting the toe of your bat and another flying up to your gloves from the same length, that’s a very difficult challenge to combat. Sideways movement, swing, or spin is a different challenge, but at least there’s some consistency, and you can strategize against that. I don’t think the pitch was good enough.”

“I covered two games in Trinidad at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy, and the surface was pretty similar. There was a lot of dense grass around the cracks, promoting the inconsistency of bounce. They need to reflect on this because they got it wrong,” said Moody on ESPNCricinfo’s TimeOut show.

Similar Views from Andy Flower

Former Zimbabwe batter Andy Flower echoed Moody’s sentiments. “You saw some interesting aerial shots of the pitch, and some commentators mentioned it being a brand-new pitch. Perhaps they could have used a previously used pitch, which might have provided a more predictable bounce.”

“The cracks around the dense grass areas created a wild variance in bounce, making it almost impossible for batters to predict where the ball would go. It was actually a little bit dangerous. Some balls flew off a length around shoulder, neck, and chin height, and one even flew over the keeper’s head for four byes. I was relieved that no one got hurt.”

Flower also felt the pitch at Trinidad reminded him of the tough pitches during the New York leg of the competition, where South Africa won three matches.

“We saw a similar pitch in New York at the start of the competition, which wasn’t good enough for international cricket. It produced a complete mismatch again today.”

Afghanistan’s Predicament

Flower sympathized with Afghanistan, who had an excellent record batting first and defending with their varied attack. “You can’t blame Afghanistan for choosing to bat first. They had an excellent record, but batting first on that pitch was a tough ask. They didn’t know what a good score would be, and they were blown away.”

Conclusion

The criticism from Tom Moody and Andy Flower highlights the importance of preparing quality pitches for international cricket. The pitch at the Brian Lara Cricket Stadium in Trinidad not only created an unfair contest between bat and ball but also posed a potential safety risk to players. As the tournament progresses, it is crucial for organizers to ensure that pitches meet the standards required for high-level competition, providing a fair and safe environment for all players.