Cricket

Pallekele International Cricket Stadium gets a below-average rating from ICC

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The pitch offered by the stadium was a batting-friendly track and the batters made the most out of the surface as a total of 1289  runs were scored over a course of five days.

Pallekele Stadium. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Sri Lanka and Bangladesh were up against each other in the first Test of the two-match Test series at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Pallekele. The Test match, which forms a part of the World Test Championship, resulted in a draw. The pitch offered by the stadium was a batting-friendly track and the batters made the most out of the surface as a total of 1289  runs were scored over a course of five days.

Batting first Bangladesh made a mammoth score of 541 runs for seven wickets while in the second innings they were outplayed by the hosts as Sri Lanka posted 648 runs for eight wickets. The third innings saw the visitors batting at 100 for two and that brought an end to the five-day Test match. 

The bowlers didn’t get any assistance from the pitch and also there was no change in the surface as the match progressed. The pitch remained flat throughout the game and thus, Pallekele Stadium has been handed one demerit point by the International Cricket Council. The Match Referee Ranjan Madugalle, who is also a part of the ICC Elite Match Referee Panel, rated the surface below average.

No shift in the balance between bat and ball as the game progressed: Ranjan Madugalle

“The character of the pitch hardly changed over the course of five days. There was no shift in the balance between bat and ball as the game progressed. The pitch remained batting-friendly throughout, resulting in a total of 1289 runs scored in the match for the loss of 17 wickets at an average of 75.82 runs per wicket, which is very high. Therefore, in keeping with the ICC guidelines I rate this pitch as below average,” Madugalle said in a statement. 

As a part of ICC’s latest pitch and outfield monitoring process, the Pallekele Stadium has been awarded one demerit point. If no change is brought to the surface and the ground receives a rating of below-average for five times, it won’t be allowed to host any international fixture for as many as 12 months.

Notably, the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium is scheduled to host the second Test from April 29 to May 3.

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