Team India is currently in Southampton for the inaugural edition of the World Test Championship (WTC) Final. They will go head-to-head against New Zealand in the battle of getting crowned as the first Test champions. Ahead of the all important final, Simon Lee, the pitch curator at the Hampshire Bowl, where the match will be played, has revealed the probable nature of the wicket.
The Virat Kohli-led team India has started training at the stadium and has been playing a four-day intra-squad match simulation at a ground next to the Hampshire bowl. New Zealand, on the other hand, will be coming to Southampton with a good experience of two Tests and their players have also been acclimatized to the English conditions.
Personally, I want to get something out that has pace, bounce and carry: Hampshire pitch curator
Ahead of the clash, Simon Lee, the pitch curator spoke to ESPNcricinfo and revealed the nature of the pitch, which he will be preparing. “For me personally I just want to get something out that has some pace, bounce, and carry in the pitch. It can be a hard thing to do in England as the weather doesn’t help us most of the time, but the forecast in the build-up is good with a lot of sun, so we are hopeful that we’ll get some pace and a hard pitch without over-rolling it and killing it,” he said.
“Pace just makes red-ball cricket exciting. I’m a cricket fan and I want to produce a pitch where the cricket lovers have to watch every ball in case they miss something, be that some class batting or an amazing spell of bowling,” Lee told.
“So, yeah, if we can get some pace and bounce in the pitch, but not too one-sided towards seam movement, we’ll be happy,” he concluded.
While the Indian team has completed 10 days in England’s southern city, New Zealand are yet to arrive owing to their Test series against England. New Zealand team is in Birmingham and they’re likely to travel to Southamton today after thrashing England at their fortress Edgbaston and winning the series 1-0. Both the teams will clash with each other in the one-off final starting June 18 at the Hampshire Bowl.