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WACA pitch will have extra pace and bounce, says curator

Last updated on: January 9, 2012 12:39 IST

'We hope to have at least extra 20 per cent of pace and bounce'

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Struggling Indian batsmen are in for a tough challenge during the Perth Test as the WACA pitch is expected to be significantly quicker this time around.

"We hope to have at least extra 20 per cent of pace and bounce (from the pitch of 2007-08). We are aiming for a similar pitch as last year which has more pace and bounce," said curator Cameron Sutherland said on Monday.

Interestingly, when the Indians played at WACA last time in 2007-08, they had won the match.

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The pitch at WACA has mythical legends around its pace and bounce and the stuff of Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson is the stuff of legends in cricket annals.

The curator promises it to be the return to those times of 70s and 80s when exceptional pace and bounce was witnessed on this surface.

"We have changed our soil type. We have tried to bring the traditional WACA characteristic of pre 1980s days. It has taken us a fair while to achieve it. We have changed the grass type, redeveloped the whole block. We are pretty close to mark now," said Sutherland.


Image: Curator Cameron Sutherland inspects the pitch
Photographs: Getty Images

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'I suppose it's best to get through India's weakness'

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The curator said there are significant differences from the earlier pitches of, say 2000 era.

"We were not getting the cracking on the surface. The hardness was also not the same. The grass recovery wasn't significant. The ball was not kissing the surface and carrying through to the keeper.

"Now we are closer to our goal. Most of it comes from the soil. The firmness of the surface with the grass has allowed each other to work in harmony."

Sutherland expected to shift gears in preparation of the pitch over the next three days. He also backed Australia to play four fast bowlers against the Indians.

"We haven't started in earnest yet. A lot of work has been done in terms of where we wanted the grass to be, coverage-wise. We begin the rolling tomorrow.

"I suppose it's best to get through India's weakness. It wouldn't be a wrong decision if Australians play with four quicks, provided the preparation over the next few days go as planned."

The third Test between India and Australia begins in Perth on January 13. Australia lose the four-match series 2-0 following their victories in Melbourne and Sydney.


Image: Ricky Ponting (left) and Ryan Harris check the pitch
Photographs: Getty Images

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