Surface tension in capital

Visitors all out for 88 as Nehra scalps 6; Vidarbha complain about underprepared wicket.

Written by Siddhartha Sharma | New Delhi | Published: December 15, 2013 1:02 am

Renowned for helping seamers early,the Roshanara wicket offered signs of under-preparation and dampness. Ashish Nehra,who picked up six of the first seven wickets to fall,didn’t even have to toil hard as the uneveness of the surface and a thick layer of grass cover gave the Vidarbha players a nightmarish experience. The visitors crawled to 40/7 but could not take the blows beyond 18.2 overs. A Parwinder Awana delivery kicked off from a length and hit Amol Jungade on his right shoulder. Vidarbha had enough,as the match was stopped for 28 minutes after skipper Shalabh Srivastava protested,requesting the umpires to intervene.

“It was clear that the pitch wasn’t perfect and whosoever won the toss would have blindly fielded. This is unfair.. We cannot risk injury and I even suggested for a call off but I was informed that we would have to handover six points so I decided to stick on,” said Vidarbha skipper Shalabh Srivastava

After the rollers were used,the track improved slightly. With the sun shining,the bounce and pace improved substantially but it didn’t help Vidarbha’s cause as they had already bore the brunt. Though veteran batsman Rashmi Ranjan Parida stood resolutely,making 27 runs,and Jungade cashed in on loose deliveries for 28,Vidarbha had already borne the brunt,getting dismissed for 88 eventually. Nehra finished with 6/16 in 10 overs.

Nehra’s scalps were down to the movement he got off the pitch and didn’t rely too much on the unpredictable bounce. He trapped opener Faiz Fazal with a sharp in-cutter,castled Shrivastava and Ravi Jangid with deliveries that moved from a length,picked Paradkar and Wagh through edges to the ‘keeper,and his last caught at short leg.

When it was Delhi’s turn to bat,Gambhir and Unmukt Chand started off cautiously. They had to fend off a few nasty deliveries,but benefited from the Vidarbha pacers’ lack of pace and control. Chand made 37 before falling to part-timer Faiz Fazal. Gambhir looked solid during his 135-ball 49 but Sandeep Singh had him caught down the leg side. At stumps Delhi were 96/2.

Vidarbha manager Ashok Upadhyay said the VCA management might file an official complaint. “We requested the referee to change the pitch. He said that if the pitch behaves badly even after repair then the pitch could be changed. Also then the match would start afresh. We’ll see if an official complaint needs to be filed with the BCCI,” he said.

Brief Scores: Vidarbha 88 in 31.1 ov. (R Parida 27,A Jungade 28; A Nehra 6/16,N Saini 2/18) vs Delhi 96/2 in 48.3 ov. (G Gambhir 49,U Chand 37; F Fazal 1/5)

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