Sports Cricket 02 Jan 2017 Quality of Ranji bal ...

Quality of Ranji balls under scanner again

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | C SANTOSH KUMAR
Published Jan 2, 2017, 12:51 am IST
Updated Jan 2, 2017, 12:56 am IST
The ball was changed once in the first session and twice in the second as it lost shape early.
L. Balaji
 L. Balaji

RAJKOT: The quality of balls being used in the ongoing Ranji Trophy semi-final has come under the scanner after they were changed thrice during the opening day between Tamil Nadu and Mumbai here. The ball was changed once in the first session and twice in the second as it lost shape early.

Former India pacer L. Balaji, currently the bowling coach of Tamil Nadu, said it was unusual to see so many balls being changed in such a short duration. “I have not seen anything like this before. I don’t know if it is because of the conditions or because of the balls’ quality. That’s up to the match officials now,”
he said.

 

Balaji said the frequent changes definitely disrupted both batting and bowling. “You are going in one motion and suddenly the condition of the ball is changing.

You need to keep adapting. The ball makes a big difference in bowlers’ skills because in the recent past a lot of [ball-related] controversies have been going on. I am sure the ball has some kind of ability to change the course of the game. I also believe that because softer balls are sometimes helpful on some wickets and heavier balls are sometimes helpful on different wickets.

 

“So, if you keep changing the balls, you won’t get set. That means the quality of balls is not good,” he added. Mumbai coach Chandrakant Pandit said they had even discussed the issue in the last conclave for captains and coaches. Complaints against SG balls are nothing new as the BCCI started testing hand-stitched Dukes as well as Kookaburras at the end of the last domestic season with a few teams airing their concerns.

During the India-South Africa Test series, Indian bowlers were critical of the quality of SG balls. Dukes are sold to the BCCI for Rs 4,200 per piece compared to Rs 1,100 per piece of SG. The machine-made Kookaburras cost around Rs 8,000 per piece.

 

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