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Pakistan vs Australia: Rawalpindi pitch rated 'below average' by ICC

11 Mar, 2022
The PCB said that it accepts ICC's decision and will ensure the quality of pitches in upcoming matches. AP Photo
The PCB said that it accepts ICC's decision and will ensure the quality of pitches in upcoming matches. AP Photo

The pitch in the Rawalpindi Stadium that was used for the first Test between Pakistan and Australia has been rated "below average" by the match referee Ranjan Madugalle of the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Match Referees and the venue has received one demerit point under the ICC Pitch and Outfield Monitoring Process.

Madugalle said that the character of the pitch hardly changed over the course of five days and that there has been no deterioration apart from the bounce getting slightly lower.

"The pitch did not have a great deal of pace and bounce in it for the seamers nor assisted the spinners as the match progressed," Madugalle said in a report.

He said that in his view that did not represent an even contest between bat and ball. Therefore, in keeping with the ICC guidelines he rated the pitch as 'below average'.

Madugalle’s report has been forwarded to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).

"This is the first time any Pakistan venue has received a demerit point," Go News cited the PCB's statement as saying after the ICC announced that the Rawalpindi pitch for the first Test series between Pakistan and Australia was "below average" and penalized it with a demerit point.

The PCB said that it accepts International Cricket Council (ICC)'s decision and will ensure the quality of pitches in upcoming matches.

According to the laws, when a venue accumulates five demerit points (or crosses that threshold), it will be suspended from hosting any international cricket for a period of 12 months, while a venue will be suspended from staging any international cricket for 24 months when it reaches the threshold of 10 demerit points. Demerit points will remain active for a rolling five-year period.