IPL news May 22, 2011

Teams should have a say in pitches - Jennings

ESPNcricinfo staff

Ray Jennings, the Royal Challengers Bangalore coach, has said home teams in the IPL should be able to prepare pitches to their liking but there should be limits on far they can go.

"If I have Dale Steyn, I can't prepare a pitch with long grass [ because] then, I am going over the top," Jennings told reporters in Bangalore on Saturday. "If you prepare wickets that are so slow, you are again going over the top. There should be boundaries. There should be limits between the maximum and minimum."

Jennings' comments come in the wake of the US$50,000 fine the BCCI imposed on Shane Warne for his public spat with Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) secretary Sanjay Dixit over changing of pitches in Jaipur.

According to Jennings, weaker teams are more likely to want to play on "unrealistic wickets", because that gives them a better chance of beating a good side. "If you prepare a wicket that is unpredictable then there is a chance of the weaker side winning," Jennings said. "The [Rajasthan] Royals have a better win ratio at home because the pitch there is slower than anywhere else. Warne is actually quiet smart and he packs the team with spinners and all of them are very different. It is important to use home advantage but the question is, to what extent?"

Bangalore are already through to the playoffs and while Jennings approved of the new knockout system, he said playing three games in four days was unfair and that teams will have to be careful to conserve their energy in order to cope. "You [have] got to save energy with the way you travel and ensure there is no disturbance from the public in the hotel. It is important to protect their energy and protect their frustration level; the frustration level in a lost tour is very high. People get tired quickly because of the fatigue level and extra pressure off the field."

When asked for his opinion on the local Karnataka talent in the team, Jennings chose to respond with a criticism of the structure of Indian domestic cricket that does not put players under pressure on a regular basis. "A lot of cricket is played on flat wickets and there is not much pressure. You have got to make sporting wickets. In a four-day game, if you don't get a hundred, then it is considered that you batted badly. You don't do enough fielding under pressure and so when the pressure is there, you don't take the catch.

"There is talent in India but make that talent play under huge amount of pressure and then you will see the results."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Big on May 25, 2011, 13:08 GMT

    How is this different from pitches being developed for pace bowlers in England, Australia and SA?

  • Bramville on May 23, 2011, 5:13 GMT

    This is utter nonsense. This is why in some cricket matches, the result is already known, even before the game is over, which makes the game so one sided at times. Why cant cricket be like any other game like hockey or football or for that matter any other team sport where players are put into a field and asked to play their best and come out victorious. If you going to tilt the external condition in favour of just ONE team, how can you judge the performance of a team?? I believe ANY sport (and Cricket too) should be played on equal terms and conditions for both teams, only then can you clearly judge the performance, capability and brilliance of a team. It is no big deal to win a match either by a batsman or a bowler if you are going to tilt the conditions in favour of either one of them.

  • Mohan on May 22, 2011, 15:19 GMT

    Agree.Here I wanted to point out that domestic teams have a say in preparing pitches Then,What is the difference between domestic teams and IPL teams? just the inclusion of foreign players,foreign coach? I ask this question to every one.I want to point out one instance where in a Ranji semifinal team Baroda beat team Karnataka on a turning track and immediately,after the match Karnataka lodged an official complaint against the Baroda.I don't know what action has BCCi has taken on the Baroda cricket board.But this kind of instances indicate that Ray Jennings is absolutely right.

  • Shantanu on May 22, 2011, 14:15 GMT

    I dont think IPL teams have a say in pitch preparation. In the current format where home and away matches arent played fully it would give unfair advantage to home team and would make matches uninteresting. As it is this year due to world cup interest in IPL is lesser and Players wouldnt want to have a dip in that as they are paid very well in IPL. I havent watched anything in IPL this year but it seems that four better teams have made it to playoiffs. But one thing is there the last day of the league is not dull. I was betting high on Chennai & Mumbai as they have kept core players same but congrats to RCB for topping the league. To Chennai I can only say that Dhoni- Dhoni since when Saha has become better player than you. Have you forgotten world cup final - bat up. What kind of a strategy is this. Dhoni also not a high believer in NRR but now he must be hoping Mumbai wins the last match closely.

  • ARIF3011 on May 22, 2011, 13:55 GMT

    Beware Jennings!!! Rajasthan Royals coach (and captain) has mentioned something about pitch to be of his liking and he had to pay $50,000. But you should not worry. You have heavyweight like Mr. Mallaya behind you so no one can even dare to think of punishing you. Shane had weak RR owners behind him who were mere spectators despite the fact he was speaking for winning matches for their team after all.

  • Dummy4 on May 22, 2011, 9:43 GMT

    i think current pitches in india are very different frm each other and hence india's top team in the world at the moment..they have few bouncy pitches like bangalore ,nagpur,mohali n dharmashala,spinning dry n dusy tracks like rajstan n chennai n also good normal flat wickets such as wankhede n indore etc..and yes indias got great talent with guys like uthappa,pujara ,tiwary,varun aaron n umesh yadav ..all they need is bit of exposure at intl level n A games..

  • gopal on May 22, 2011, 8:55 GMT

    the home team should have a say in preparing the wickets. There should be a fine line to judge whether the wicket is under-prepared, but there should be rules in international cricket about the limitations of a wicket. The home team should be fined or docked some points if they prepare an under-prepared wicket. The point is... control should be with the home team. the fine on SKW is unfair. As long as people who run cricket dont know cricket, these incidents are bound to happen.

  • Prasanna on May 22, 2011, 5:10 GMT

    Ya point is clear .. He says home team can hav pitch to ter liking but to some extent .. See wat rajasthan had .. And are the spectators payin huge money to watch such a boring and low scoring matches ?? thats the reason y pitch is changed .. but ppl mistook and critising csk management ... Even MI did complain about that pitch . . . .

  • Allwin on May 22, 2011, 5:02 GMT

    What does Indian domestic cricket got to do with not having Karnataka talent ? They let Manish Pandey, Uthappa, Dravid go. Thats a really stupid answer to cover up some inconvenient truth.

  • Shayesh on May 22, 2011, 4:51 GMT

    Very, very true. Teams should be entitled ti having home-advantage, but as long as it doest have a severe toll on the entertainment value of the game.

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