Tough Hobart wicket awaits Sri Lanka
By Staff Writers | November 13, 2012
Hobart's green surface has always been helpful for the seamers. © AFP
The wicket for the first Test between Australia and Sri Lanka at the Bellerive Oval next month has raised concerns after a string of low-scoring affairs and first-class games there ending in under three days.
Sri Lanka are scheduled to play at the venue from December 14–18, which gives the curator a month to ensure the recently relaid surface doesn't heavily favour the seamers and hinder batting.
Bad weather too has not helped the head curator Marcus Pamplin's cause, however, Cricket Australia (CA) has said it was confident a good Test wicket would be produced in time for the first Test.
" ... [Pamplin] has only had that deck laid for three or four months now. It takes a while for decks to settle down and we have complete confidence in his ability and Cricket Tasmania's ability in ensuring they put everything into the preparation for the first Test against Sri Lanka," Sean Cary, CA's senior operations manager, told the Herald Sun.
Usman Khawaja, who managed to battle it out and score a century on the surface recently, has said that he noticed dead spots on the wicket, while Queensland captain Chris Hartley said that he doesn't expect many first-class games to go the full four days if the pitch remains the same.
"There's obviously some issues with the wicket being new and the difficulties the ground staff have got with that, and particularly in getting the wicket hard enough ... and compact enough," Tasmania coach Tim Coyle told reporters.
"The wicket could be better, but at the end of the day there's two teams out there playing on it."
Sri Lanka will play three Test matches, including a Boxing Day Test at the MCG, five ODIs and two T20s in Australia.
Tour fixtures: Sri Lanka tour of Australia 2012/13
© Island Cricket