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Test batsman should be able to handle all kinds of conditions, says Ben Stokes

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After the Chepauk pitch used for the second India-England Test match was a subject of criticism for pundits and experts, England all-rounder Ben Stokes has said that a Test batsman should be able to handle all kinds of conditions.

Pondering about the behaviour of the turf at the newly reconstructed Motera stadium, the 29-year-old New Zealand-born cricketer stated that Test players should be capable of seeing off any challenge thrown at them. 

"The thing about being a Test batsman is that you need to be able to handle all types of conditions. India is one of the places where it is a lot tougher for overseas batsmen to come and be successful, but then so too is England," he wrote in a column for the Daily Mirror.

"And that is part of the game, the challenges and why we love it," he said.

The pitch at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in the second Test came under the scanner for the vicious turn it offered from day one, as several former cricketers including Michael Vaughan and Mark Waugh slammed the pitch curator for producing what they referred to as a ‘minefield’.

Stokes also had his say on why he only bowled two overs in the game raising a few eyebrows.

"Don't read too much into the fact that I didn't bowl a huge amount in the second game, I'm sure if it was a green seamer I would have bowled a lot more overs.

"I think there may be more reason for me to bowl under lights in the next game if it will help the team,” the world’s top-ranked Test all-rounder said.

The visitors were thrashed by 317 runs in the second Test after the Joe Root-led England side had defeated India by 227 runs in the first at the same venue. 

The series is currently tied at 1-1 and the third Test will be a day/night affair at the newly reconstructed Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, Ahmedabad. And Stokes stated that it was difficult to predict how the track would behave.

"Generally around the world whenever these pink ball games are played there is always a period when the ball starts doing a bit under lights and it brings the seamers right into the game," Stokes wrote.

"For us out here that will be massive. And at a brand new ground that looks pretty impressive no-one will know just how it will react.

"We've got a good spin department, but hopefully with conditions that suit, we've certainly got a seam department to back them up strongly."

England need to win the third Test in order to keep their hopes alive of playing in the World Test Championship final while India need to win one and draw another in the remaining two matches.

Feature image courtesy: BCCI 2021.



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