New Zealand's Bracewell refuses to criticise Lucknow pitch after losing T20I on spin-friendly track

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Tue, 31/01/2023
New Zealand's Bracewell refuses to criticise Lucknow pitch after losing T20I on spin-friendly track
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Teams visiting India are always vocal in their complaints when they get to play on a spin-friendly pitch in any format of cricket in the country, attempting to rip the pitch apart as unplayable, dangerous, and unsuitable for cricket.

However, New Zealand spinner Michael Bracewell made no such complaints after his team was defeated by India in the second T20I of the three-match series on a spin-friendly pitch at the Bharat Ratna Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ekana Cricket Stadium in Lucknow.

New Zealand were restricted to 99/8 in 20 overs on a pitch where the ball took a lot of turn and was unplayable at times. India almost made a meal of the chase in response, as New Zealand used five spinners to put pressure on them.

Suryakumar Yadav slapped Blair Tickner over mid-off for four runs with three runs needed off two balls to tie the three-match series 1-1. Spinners from both teams bowled 30 out of 40 overs in the match, with no sixes hit by batters from either team.

While former India left-handed batter Gautam Gambhir and New Zealand fast-bowling all-rounder James Neesham were critical of the Lucknow pitch, Bracewell did not complain about it despite being asked leading questions about it.

Though he stated that he would not want to play on such a surface on a regular basis, he stated that such matches have taught them valuable lessons.

"It's probably not a wicket you want to play on every time you play a Twenty-20, but it's an exciting opportunity to learn and try and grow your skills," Bracewell said in the post-match press conference.

"We have no choice but to accept. It's exciting to try to figure out how to play on these various wickets "said Bracewell.

"If you play on a wicket like that or a flat wicket all the time, you won't get a true test of your skills. I believe that having a variety of wickets around the world is a good thing "Bracewell went on to say.

Bracewell is usually deprived of any pitch assistance at home and can only hope for such assistance for spinners in his dreams.

Spinners from both teams bowled well on the pitch in Lucknow, according to him.

"Both teams demonstrated that their spinners bowled extremely well and made scoring extremely difficult. The fact that no sixes were scored in the game is most likely a reflection of this. It wasn't an easy wicket to bat on, and it's one of those games, a thrilling game that's probably a little different from the typical Twenty20."

With the ball spinning so much, New Zealand skipper Mitchell Santner turned his arm over as spinners bowled 17 of the Black Caps' 19.5 overs.

"I was looking everywhere for them [spinners], I was going to ask Lockie [Ferguson] if he could bowl some was definitely something different," Santner said.