Edgbaston Groundsman Has "No Directive" Over Ashes Test Surface
Edgbaston groundsman Gary Barwell has received “no directive” from the England and Wales Cricket Board regarding the pitch for next week’s third Ashes Test against Australia.
The two pitches prepared for the first two Tests – at Cardiff and Lord’s – were criticised for being too slow, with England captain Alastair Cook being forced to deny that he requested a slow pitch at Lord’s – after Australia leveled the series at 1-1 by outbowling England on a benign surface.
The hosts will hope that Barwell’s team has produced a pitch that will suit their bowling style when the third Test of the 2015 Ashes series begins at Edgbaston on Wednesday July 29. England are currently 10/3 to win the third Ashes Test at Betfred, who also offer 4/5 Australia to win and 5/2 for the draw.
England Have No Say On Edgbaston Ashes Surface
With the state of the Ashes pitches so far under intense scrutiny, Barwell was quick to dispel rumours that he’d been told what type of pitch to prepare.
Barwell said: “I’m trying to produce a good-quality Test pitch with plenty for the bowlers and the batsmen: good carry and good bounce.
“I’ve had no directives from the ECB on what kind of pitch to prepare.”
Cook Hopeful Of Pitch Assistance
England captain Cook is also hoping for better at Edgbaston – in what will be the first Test to be held there since 2012 – next week and hopes his side can start to produce performances on surfaces more suited to them, with the Nottinghamshire venue expected to assist the host side’s seamers.
Discussing the Lord’s surface, Cook said: “We want to play on English wickets and that probably wasn’t too English, but that’s nowhere near an excuse.”