Mumbai, April 17: Former Australia speedster Brett Lee on Wednesday urged that pitches in India should be made more conducive for fast bowlers to make the contest an even one and help the country keep producing pacers.
Lee, who played 76 Tests and 221 ODIs, without naming the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup, also said that India has a good chance to do well in the mega event starting on May 30. "I urge the ground staff to prepare wickets that are a bit more conducive to fast bowling. I want to see a wicket with a little bit more in it (for the pacers), thoda thoda grass (little little grass), to make the bowlers smart and to give them the opportunity to bowl fast," Lee told reporters here.
The 42-year-old former pacer was present at an event to announce a Mumbai-specific tie-up between the real estate developers Runwal Group and Cricket Australia. "What happens if you are 17 years of age and playing a four-day match - Ranji Trophy - it's really hot and you are bowling on a wicket with no grass and it's flat and you are trying to bowl a 145K, dehydrated.
"You have lost 7 litres of a fluid a day and you are flying in and you are losing all your energy, and then you have got a guy at the other end (a spinner) coming down taking five wickets because the wicket spins massively. What's the incentive for this guy (pacer) to run in everyday? So we need to create the incentive," he explained.
The former pacer, who took 310 Test wickets, at the same time conceded that the wickets for pacers have improved and cited the examples of Mumbai and Mohali. "If India want to keep creating good fast bowlers, then they need to make sure (that there are) wickets to compensate for that. Mohali normally gets through. I think that the wicket here (in Mumbai) is good now.
"I reckon the wickets are getting better. If you had asked me this question three years ago, the wickets had been shocking. Now the wickets are giving a little more for the bowlers. I am not saying I want a green top which flies through, but something for the (fast) bowlers to make it an even contest," he explained.