Pakistan in SA

Kirsten places pitch order

2013-02-20 07:40
Gary Kirsten (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Proteas coach Gary Kirsten has asked for a pitch with less turn when they face Pakistan in the final Test in Centurion on Friday.

The Newlands pitch in the second Test provided assistance to Pakistan spinner Saeed Ajmal, who claimed match figures of ten for 147 in a losing cause.

While the pitch at Newlands did have something in it for all bowlers, there seemed to be unhappiness in the South African camp, with skipper Graeme Smith expressing as much in a post-match interview.

“It was a tough Test ... conditions suited (Pakistan) a lot more; they looked at home in them," Smith said after his side wrapped up the series with a four-wicket win.

“It was like the Subcontinent (but) we have to play on what we’re given ... (we prefer) pitches with pace and bounce."

Kirsten on Tuesday said they want a more seamer-friendly wicket this time round. "We just don't want a pitch that will turn a lot," the coach told the Beeld website.

However, the Proteas boast a good record at Centurion. Of the 17 Tests played there since 1995, they have won 13 and lost only once.

Four of the last five Tests won by South Africa at the ground were by an innings margin. It was against New Zealand in 2007 (innings and 59 runs), Bangladesh in 2008 (innings and 48 runs), India in 2010 (innings and 25 runs) and Sri Lanka in 2011 (innings and 81 runs).

The last Test Pakistan played there was in 2007, when South Africa won by seven wickets.

It is thus clear that the pitch has enough pace which makes it tough for teams from the subcontinent.

Read more on:    proteas  |  pakistan in sa  |  gary kirsten  |  cricket

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