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'I have no issues on Kanpur pitch'

In the wake of row over Kanpur pitch, India's coach Gary Kirsten says the hosts can take the home advantage if the tracks are not dangerous for the visitors.
PTI | By HT Correspondent, Mumbai
UPDATED ON APR 16, 2008 05:24 PM IST

The Kanpur pitch may have kicked up a storm for being too favourable for spin-reliant India against South Africa, but coach Gary Kirsten on Wednesday said there nothing wrong in taking the home advantage as long as the tracks are not dangerous for the visiting sides.

Kirsten, who received a cash prize of $75,000 and a shield from ICC CEO Malcolm Speed on behalf of captain Anil Kumble for the Indian team finishing second on the ICC rankings behind Australia, said different countries offer different conditions and no one should complain.

"As far as I am concerned India won the Test match at Kanpur. I have no issues on the pitch. I leave it to the BCCI. There are different (pitch) conditions in different countries. Succeeding away from home is a big challenge," the former South African Test opener said.

"I am very pleased that groundsmen and curators around the world are not overdoing it. In all these years only one pitch was considered dangerous (the pitch at Jamaica's Sabina Park in Kingston in the 1998 series between West Indies and England)," he added.

India won the third Test inside three days on a crumbling wicket to square the series 1-1 after losing the second Test in Ahmedabad.

Another former South African player Shaun Pollock echoed the view.

"As long as it does not come to a stage where a game is called off because the pitch is dangerous, it's fine," he said after receiving cash prize of $75,000 and a shield from Speed on behalf of current SA captain Graeme Smith after the Proteas finished top of the ICC ODI rankings.

Australian captain Ricky Ponting, who received $2.5 million in all for his team's top ranking in Tests and no 2 in ODIs also said that in his long career spanning over 100 Tests the wickets have, as a rule, been good.

"In the amount of Test cricket I have played, over 100 Tests, I have not come across many substandard wickets. Over the last seven to eight years the wickets have been pretty good for batting, as Shaun would agree to.

"Most of the times the groundsmen and curators get the wicket right, On some occasions they don't. I am happy with the type of wickets I have played on."

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