“I think it will be a very similar pitch this week” – Zak Crawley on final Test against India

Zak Crawley

England opener Zak Crawley has admitted that the visitors are expecting a pitch similar to the one prepared for the pink-ball encounter for the final Test against India in Ahmedabad.

Many former England cricketers, Michael Vaughan in particular, have been vocal in expressing their displeasure over the surface for the third Test.

Most of the members of the England squad have, however, stated that they do not have any issues over the nature of the strip. Sharing his views about the pitch for the final Test, Zak Crawley said at a virtual press conference:

“I think it will be a very similar pitch this week. And why wouldn’t it be? They have played very well on the last two pitches that have turned.”

Conceding that run scoring hasn’t been easy in the last two games, Crawley added:

“But it’s the same for both sides and they have played very well. We had our chance to bat first on it (pink-ball Test). Unfortunately, we didn’t play as well as we needed to.”

England managed only 112 batting first after winning the toss in the previous Test, which proved critical in the end. Zak Crawley top-scored in England’s first innings with 53.

Asked if facing the red ball will be slightly easier compared to the pink ball, Zak Crawley replied in the affirmative. The 23-year-old elaborated:

“It depends on the pitch. If it is the same pitch, I do think it will be slightly easier. The pink ball was a bit harder and therefore skidded on quite quickly, which is why we saw Axar (Patel) get so many wickets lbw and bowled.”

Admitting that Indian left-arm spinner Axar Patel will remain a threat even with the traditional ball, Crawley added:

“I think he still has that ball in his armoury (one that skids on) for sure and he will still be a massive threat. It might not skid on with the same pace as the pink ball but we’ll still be watchful.”

England captain Joe Root also pointed out after the day-night Test that the pink ball skidding on made life tough for batsmen from both sides.

The fourth and final Test between India and England will be played in Ahmedabad from March 4.

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