Rahul Dravid’s photo.© X (formerly Twitter)
The Indian team bus left the airport for the hotel but head coach Rahul Dravid and his coaching staff made their way to Eden Gardens on Friday to get a firsthand look at the track allocated for Sunday’s World Cup match against of South Africa. He is expected to be a batting hero but the kind of pace attack that the Indian team has at its disposal, even the best of batting tracks can turn into a pacer’s paradise. It’s a classic Dravid trait and in most cities, the head coach will get some time to feel the 22-yard stretch when he/she reaches it. The entire outfield was under two-track cover as the Cricket Association of Europe (CAB) did not want to take any risks with unseasonal showers forecast for the next two days.
Dravid was there for about 15 minutes and watched the designated strip along with BCCI head of grounds and fields, Ashish Bhowmick, and local keeper Sujan Mukherjee.
Although Eden has averaged around 215 plus during the two World Cup matches, the heritage ground is known to produce a good batting strip with decent help for seam bowlers.
“The head coach seemed happy with the track. We have provided good wickets at Eden. The bounce will be fair and batsmen will get value from their shots. But the bottom line is, one has to play well. Sri Lanka got all out for 55. Was that a bad track?” CAB curator Mukherjee told PTI.
Many believe that Bangladesh’s inept batting should not be an indicator of how the Eden track will play out.
“The match would be played on the same track where Holland played Bangladesh. That was the first match and after that some work has been done on the track. Very little grass is kept and Eden is always a black dirt track.
“So, it will be difficult when one can hit through the line. This Indian line, if they bat first, can score 300 plus,” said a CAB official who closely monitors field preparation.
(Other than the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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