After Bangladesh’s terrible performance in the ICC World Cup, people started talking a lot about how important it is to have sports fields at home.
Even though the top tournament in India was held on tracks that were good for hitting, Bangladesh was unable to meet the current standards for scoring big. The Tigers had to wait until their last game, against Australia, to make a score of 300 or more. After the game, stand-in captain Najmul Hossain Shanto said that it was because they didn’t know how to score big.
Bangladesh’s pacers were very poor when it came to bowling, even though they came into the event with a lot of hope. India’s quicks have been better than most, if not the best. Great players from the past have said a lot nice things about them.
So, the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Mirpur once again takes the lead. It continues to host the vast majority of local and foreign matches, which confuses both experts and fans, if not the people who make decisions at the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB).
India’s long-term plan is currently paying off on the international stage, making them one of the best examples of how building sports fields all over a country can totally change its cricketing culture.
In the past, India was known for making rank turners that helped spinners play against foreign teams. The goal of making sports tracks for the greater good has been in place since 2012, when Daljit Singh, who used to be the top steward of the BCCI, took over.
Sujan Mukherjee, the chief manager of Kolkata’s Eden Gardens stadium, told The Daily Star yesterday, “Look, there was a time when India didn’t have many good pacers, but now India has one of the best fast-bowling units in the world.” Young people like bowling on open areas, and we’re getting new fast bowlers.
“Playing on good wickets gave players the chance to get better at the game.” In this way, the pitch is very important to the growth of a player. You can work hard, be dedicated, and have skills, but you won’t be able to become a good bowler if you don’t play on sports fields.
Sujan has worked for the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) for ten years and is in charge of making the sports tracks for the World Cup that is currently going on. Before the second semi-final between South Africa and Australia, he was busy getting the Kolkata pitch ready and talking about how the Mirpur field can become similar.
“The soil is the most important thing; it needs to be good.” After putting down the Bermuda grass, we made sure it had deep roots and stuck to the ground well so that it could hold the grass.
“What I saw on the Mirpur pitch is that it breaks up and opens up over time.” It doesn’t matter if the dirt is black or red; what matters is how you take care of it and whether it can hold.
To find the right dirt, you need to look around, and the manager needs to do the same. If you need to, change all of the square’s dirt. The whole dirt has to be changed every eight to ten weeks, and then fertilisers and medicines have to be given. “It’s not impossible because you need to want to get better,” he said.
Someone who used to play cricket in the Dhaka Premier League in the middle of the 1980s says that the players need to feel safe wherever they play, and the pitch gives them that freedom.
In Bangladesh, there have been reports that club managers and board members mess with the pitches that players want for local and foreign games. Sujan said that stewards in India never get orders like that, so they are free to do their jobs.
“The board does not tell us how to prepare pitches, not even for domestic cricket, because the most important thing is to make sporting pitches.” I’ve been in charge of four places in Kolkata for ten years, but the board has never given me any instructions.
“Not even the Kolkata Knight Riders, whose home field this is, asked me to do that.” There is no one telling me how to change the nature of the field when I’m setting up the pitches. “The ball comes on to the bat nicely, so batters can play their shots. Fast bowlers can get good bounce, and spinners can also get purchase on this wicket because it’s a competitive wicket,” he said.
It will be interesting to see if BCB finally understands how important it is to prepare sports pitches at home in order to get the results they want on the international stage, especially after the disaster at the World Cup, or if they will keep looking for blame without really trying to find a solution.