India captain MS Dhoni’s wish for an Eden Gardens wicket that will be different from the one prepared in Delhi for the first Test looks set to be fulfilled.
“For a Test, you have to prepare a wicket that will last five days. If the match finishes in three days, you are cheating the paying public,” Prabir Mukherjee, the curator at Eden Gardens, told HT on Thursday.
The first Test was played on a Ferozshah Kotla wicket that was slow and had low bounce. “It was a difficult wicket in its own way,” Dhoni had said. The second Test starts on Monday.
Mukherjee also ruled out doctoring the wicket, which is the only way the batting-friendly nature of the Eden pitch can be made more receptive to spin. “What is the difference between doctoring the wicket and fixing the result?” Mukherjee asked.
Lack of preparation The square at Eden Gardens has three strips where international matches can be held. The recent India-England ODI and T20 were both played on the centre wicket.
India won the ODI after scoring 271 but lost the T20I where they managed only 120 for nine. Dhoni had called the Eden wicket “slow and very difficult” after the second match, but had added that India did not bat well.
Mukherjee has an explanation for it.
“This year, we tried to get the wicket ready earlier than normal because we wanted to host Champions League matches in September. However, it rained so much that the matches had to be shifted out.
“But because we had to keep the wickets under cover to prepare them, the grass died. That did a lot of damage, but we have tried to salvage the situation.”