Wow ha, unfortunately it seems many of you here (IND fans) are still holding feelings over the Nagpur test being called a poor & it perpetuating humourous delusions about this pitch being poor.
I have watched majority of this test and it blatantly obvious that the surface has played much much better than the very green tinge in the wicket has made it look. I spoke to prominent media who in in Hamilton & this is what he said:
"It's not as bad as it looks. Nagpur pitch was definitely worse than this one.
I love rank turners, but within reason."
Anyone watching this test and drawing any correlation with Nagpur is in a dream world. @Chewie
Did you try telling that to Jerome Jayaratne?
Btw of course this pitch seems fine to those outside Asia, and why not, it doesn't help spin one bit? Any pitch that doesn't help spin is 'fine', even this green garden ... thats the whole point.
I have no issues with this pitch per se, of course NZ should prepare whatever pitch they think best, but to say that that green pitch, 'doctored' according to the SL head coach is a shining example of fair pitches is clearly wrong.
Anyone will tell you that the whole point of leaving grass on a wicket is to assist seam movement after pitching, the more the grass the more the help, hence this pitch is easily an extreme version of that. If the bowlers havent bowled the right areas (something that Trent Boult admitted they didn't do), it doesn't make the pitch a batting paradise. Just imagine if at Nagpur, the spinners had bowled long hops and gotten smashed around, would that have made the pitch better. That the spinner bowled the right areas, almost ruthlessly so doesn't make the pitch any worse, just as poor bowling on this wicket by Boult's own admission, doesn't make this wicket any better.
A pitch is what it is, and how the bowlers bowl not it doesnt change anything. That green pitch is definitely on the extreme side, no matter how much you try to hide behind the poor bowling on the wicket.
Pitches outside Asia get away with a lot, including under-prepared wickets as happened during Ind Tour to NZ in 2002/03. Even Fleming admitted one of the pitches was underprepared. (@grkrama already posted a link to it in Ind-SA thread).
There is no point in trying to say that we are seeing it from an Indian fans' view.
As an Indian cricket fan All the complaining and moaning about the Nagpur pitches means little to me. SA and indeed anyone, are welcome to come to India, moan and cry about the pitches, put up a gutless show, get walloped, and then leave. The more the merrier, infact.
However as a cricket fan, I do find a clear disparity in how pitches inside Asia and those outside Asia are percieved. Forget the debate on pitches that help spin vs wickets that help pace, even Flat Asian wickets get all kinds of abuse (UAE 1st test), but runs on flat wickets outside Asia are revered (Perth).