Pune rank turner rated 'poor' by ICC

The quality of the pitch for Pune's debut Test match has been rated as "poor" after Australia upset India on a rank turner at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium.

A report on the quality of the pitch, compiled by International Cricket Council (ICC) match referee Chris Broad, has been forwarded to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which has 14 days to respond.

The venue, traditionally known for having a surface that favours carry and seam, with results in domestic four-day matches hard to come by, saw the tourists dismiss their hosts for 105 and 107 in the opening Test of a four-match series to seal a surprise 333-run victory.

There have been suggestions curators in Pune were encouraged to prepare a pitch that would disadvantage Australia, who floundered against spin in Sri Lanka in July and August last year.

Asked at a news conference about those insinuations, India captain Virat Kohli replied: "I don't know. I didn't speak to anyone.

"I don't think it was any different from the turners that we played in the past. We just didn't play good cricket. 

"You can ask me any sort of questions or any perception about the loss. We know exactly what happened, the mistakes that we made. 

"External perceptions don't matter to us; they have never mattered to us."

According to ICC rules, a pitch deemed substandard for the first time would prompt a "warning and or a fine not exceeding US$15,000 given together with a directive for appropriate corrective action".

The second Test between India and Australia begins in Bangalore on Saturday.


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