Pitch preparation: Dhoni has his way, Eden pitch curator takes month's leave
Prabir Mukherjee, who has been preparing the Eden Gardens pitch since 1985 has decided to take a month's leave with just a few days to go for the third Test match at Kolkata on 5 December 2012. He has been let down by BCCI, CAB and MS Dhoni, who wanted a spinning track, which Mukherjee did not want to prepare - having said in public that he wanted to prepare a sporting track.
EDEN GARDENS has been the home of Indian Cricket in Bengal, as it is also considered to be one of the best cricket playing venues in the world. VVS Laxman's knock of 281 runs, Harbhajan Singh's hat trick against the Aussies are just memories of this ground, where the 22 yard strip in the center has been one of the best, which has helped in producing quality Test matches. The credit for which should go to the curator of the pitch, Prabir Mukherjee, who has been doing his best to lay out a good pitch since 1985. But, just before the India-England third Test match scheduled for next week, Mukherjee has decided to take a month's leave.
Apparently, MS Dhoni
and BCCI wanted a spinning track for the Test match against the English side starting on 5 December 2012. There were speculations that the renowned pitch curator was disappointed with the turn of events that he resigned, but he later told CNN-IBN, “I am not loving this atmosphere and not happy that CAB did not support me." Is this the way we treat Mukherjee, who has done so much of work for Eden Gardens? It is due to such kind of politics, which does not help the growth of cricket in India.
It is a sorry situation for Mukherjee, as neither the BCCI nor the CAB came forward to solve the matter. From this, it becomes obvious that it is not only MS Dhoni, who wanted a spin track, but all the cricket officials, barring Mukherjee, who must have thought of a sporting wicket. When Dhoni asked for a spin track, Mukherjee had clearly stated that he wanted it in writing from the BCCI to prepare a pitch as per his request. His demand, Mukherjee felt, was 'unethical'.
Whenever a pitch has been asked to be prepared by the home captain, it has been done so in captains whims and fancies. So, MS Dhoni has always got what he wanted - not necessarily the results. But, this may be for the first time that a curator did not want to listen to th instructions of a captain and preapre a pitch for the good of the game.
So in order to fulfill Dhoni's wishes, another pitch curator from East Zone, Ashish Bhowmick, reported CNN-IBN has been taken in to prepare the wicket for the third Test match, which needs no rocket scientist to explain as the kind of pitch which is going to be prepared – spin track. MS Dhoni won the pitch battle, but will he win the battle to be fought out against the English side in the third Test match in that 22 yard strip prepared by Bhowmick?