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‘It wasn’t dangerous’: Pakistan coach Gary Kirsten defends New York’s T20 World Cup pitch amid criticism | Cricket News – Times of India



NEW DELHI: Pakistan coach Gary Kirsten defended the playing surface at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium following the team’s narrow six-run defeat to India in a low-scoring T20 World Cup match.
Despite India’s modest total of 119, their lowest ever against Pakistan in a T20 game, Pakistan fell short in their chase, sparking discussions about the pitch conditions.
T20 World Cup Schedule | Points Table
The venue, featuring a ‘drop in’ square laid a month before the tournament, has seen all five games produce low scores, raising concerns about the pitch’s quality. After India’s previous win over Ireland, former Zimbabwe international and ex-England team director Andy Flower labeled the pitch “dangerous” due to its uneven bounce.
However, Kirsten downplayed these criticisms, suggesting that the pitch, while challenging, was not hazardous. “I think it wasn’t dangerous, I mean the odd one rose up, but not many. Generally, it kept a little bit lower, it was difficult to score from both batting sides and also a fairly slow outfield so it was never going to be a big total,” he stated.

Kirsten acknowledged that a score of 140 would have been competitive, indicating that Pakistan had a strong chance to win after restricting India to 119. “I would have said 140 would have been a really good score on that pitch, so India didn’t get that and so I thought we had the game,” added the South African.

He also emphasized that low-scoring games could be equally entertaining and offered a different kind of contest compared to the high-scoring encounters typical of T20 cricket.
“We knew it was going to be tight, but you know sometimes it’s fun seeing games like that as well, it’s not always about sixes and hitting, getting 260 and 240’s, you can actually have a really entertaining game on a 120 chase, so I don’t think it’s bad for the game,” Kirsten explained.

In response to the criticism, the International Cricket Council (ICC) admitted that the pitches at the venue had not met the expected standards and committed to improving them for the remaining matches.
Three games remain at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium, with the final match scheduled for Wednesday, when India will face co-hosts USA.
(With inputs from AFP)

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