Wankhede pitch to turn from second day onwards, says curator

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Wankhede pitch to turn from second day onwards, says curator

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SportsCafe Desk

12/05/2016

England's hopes of reviving the series might be in trouble after the curator at Wankhede Stadium revealed that it would be a spinning track for the fourth Test. The staff have already started shaving the grass on the surface and have reduced watering it, which points to a turning pitch.

"It should turn from second day evening, or at least by the third day. There's heavy dew these days, so we're watering the pitch less. We've cut the grass a bit too, so that the wicket bears a fresh look for the Test," Ramesh Mamunkar, the curator at Wankhede Stadium, told TOI on Sunday.

Last year, the pitch came under scrutiny when Indian team director Ravi Shastri got into an argument with the then curator Sudhir Naik after South Africa made a record 438 runs in the final ODI against India. Adding to it, there were also complaints from Uttar Pradesh's Ranji team about the pitch being too flat after Mumbai made 610 for nine in a Ranji game last season. The first Ranji game this season between Maharasthra and Delhi, also saw two triple hundreds scored by Maharashtra's Swapnil Gugale (351 not out) and Delhi's Rishabh Pant (308 not out).

While denying reports that he had received any instructions from the Indian team about preparing a spin-friendly pitch, Mumankar said that the pitch is made to get a fair result out of the fourth Test.

"We make batsman-friendly pitches for ODI and T20 games, but it'll obviously be different for a Test. It'll be a sporting, fair pitch, with good 'carry'. The ball will move here on the first day, as it always does here. The second day will be good for batting, before the spinners come into the picture," he said.

England have been totally exposed against spin bowling in the series so far with 32 of their total 53 dismissals coming against the Indian spinners. Now with the fourth Test offering to be a spin-fest, there could be more trouble for Alastair Cook and Co.

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