Green pitch puts Patel's inclusion in doubt

Posted By: Staff

Wellington, Dec 10(ANI): New Zealand off-spinner Jeetan Patel's inclusion in the squad for the third Test against Pakistan looks doubtful as a healthy covering of grass evident on the McLean Park wicket will push both sides to maintain a seam-based attack.

New Zealand pace bowler Daryl Tuffey was enthused by what he heard about a wicket block that is to be used for the first time this season.

"We've heard there's going to be a little bit more moisture and greenness, so hopefully that brings the seamers into play a little bit more," NZPA quoted Tuffey, as saying.

A green pitch could mean that Patel and Pakistan's off-spinner Saeed Ajmal should be braced for 12th man duties.

Patel has had reasonable success in Napier, taking six for 151 against the West Indies and four for 180 against the spin-savvy Indians in March. But, the track record may be irrelevant, as turf manager Phil Stoyanoff has produced a surface likely to continue New Zealand's batting woes against a disciplined attack. (ANI)

Story first published: Thursday, December 10, 2009, 17:44 [IST]
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