Legendary West Indies batsman Vivian Richards has slammed the criticism of the pitch that was on offer for the pink ball Test between India and England in Ahmedabad, saying it's not surprising to see a turning track in "spin land". Richards urged the former England cricketers to stop moaning and groaning about the pitch and said the visitors should look to improve and rise above the challenges.
India spinners Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin ran through the visiting batting line-up as England were bundled out for 112 and 81 across two innings. The Test match ended in little more than 5 sessions in what was the shortest Test match since World War II.
From calling the Chepauk wicket unplayable to urging the ICC to take action against India over the Motera pitch, former England cricketers have such as Alastair Cook and Michael Vaughan have criticized the conditions.
However, Vivian Richards believes England should be prepared to get dirty and understand that there is no one way to scoring runs in Test matches.
"I have been asked questions recently about the Test match that was played in India the second and third Test match against England. And I am a little confused about the question really because there seems to be a lot of moaning and groaning about the wicket that they were playing on," Richards said in a video.
"I just felt that the ones who are moaning, in my opinion, should realise that there are times that you're going to get a seaming track, a ball that is basically jumping off a good length and everyone thinks that's a problem for batters. There are times batters sometimes cope with that.
"But now you've seen the other side, and this is why I think it was given the name Test match cricket, because of the test of the mind and will and everything else that goes with it when you're competing. And the complaints have been that the wicket is spinning too much and all that sort of stuff. This is another side of the arc guys.
"People seem to forget where they are playing, that if you're going to India, you should expect that. You are going to spin land. You should basically prepare yourself to know what you're going to encounter.
"I just believe all the moaning and groaning has got to stop and just not see the classical side of things in terms of the Indian armoury. And from where I'm sitting, it's good to see," he added.
Vivian Richards also urged India to prepare a similar pitch for the 4th Test, which will also be played at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
"Rather than the moaning and groaning in my opinion, especially just recently how quickly that Test match was over, it gives England an opportunity and a chance to assess things, to believe that for some reason the wicket that they're going to encounter in the fourth Test is going to be the same. If I was India or I had anything to do with the preparations of the wicket, I would bring in very much the same," Richards said.
Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon also slammed the pitch critics, saying he is baffled to see so much chatter about the playing conditions. Lyon pointed out that no one talks about seaming conditions but "as soon as the pitch starts spinning, everyone in the world seems to start crying".