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Ball to seam under lights, says curator

MOHALI, March 27: It will be batting-friendly for most part but the pitch here at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium, which will host the eagerly-anticipated World Cup semi-final between India and Pakistan on Wednesday, would assist seam bowlers under floodlights.

“The ball will seam a bit under the lights,” PCA curator Daljeet Singh said on Saturday.

He added that it would be a typical Mohali wicket, with generally good pace and bounce, which was its basic nature. Daljeet further said the strip to be used in the semi-final will be the same which was used for the Ireland-West Indies World Cup game here on March 11.

India may have been undefeated against Pakistan in World Cup history, but they have been beaten by the arch foes at this venue on two previous occasions.

Daljeet said as dew could be a factor they would stop watering the ground three days before Wednesday’s clash.

“We have just started to observe how much dew falls during these days. We have also cut grass blades low so that minimum dew sticks to them. If need arises, we may use vetting agent APSA-80, which helps minimise dew though it does not entirely eliminate it,” he added.

Asked if there were any instructions to have a particular type of wicket, he said: “We adhere to general ICC guidelines that the pitch should [generally] be batsman-friendly.”

He revealed that ICC’s pitch consultant Andy Atkinson was expected to arrive here within a day or two, saying: “I have also ensured not to over-prepare the wicket as it is end of the season. I have had light rollers used for the wicket.”