Aussies in dark about Nagpur new stadium

Published: Wednesday, November 5, 2008, 11:52 [IST]
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Melbourne: Australian players have been placed in the barely tenable position of being unable to train on the ground at which they are to play a pivotal Test match in two days" time.

The Vidarbha Cricket Association"s new stadium in Nagpur was completed this year and has only previously hosted a pair of trial games, FOX Sports reported. 

Its practice facilities are not yet ready, meaning the Australians and Indians have been booked to train at the old VCA ground, which hosted the 2004 Test between the two nations.

So new is the stadium, in fact, that ICC match referee Chris Broad was required to make an inspection of the ground this morning before signing it off as fit for international cricket. 

In the mad rush of the modern international calendar it is nothing new for a touring side to see a one day or Twenty20 venue the day before the match, but as Mike Hussey pointed out, Tests are a different matter. 

“I am someone who likes to get into the ground as early as possible, get gear set-up and all that sort of stuff, go out in the middle and have a look around because there are lots of distractions, every ground is different, so it"s nice to become accustomed with those before you head out to play," Hussey said. 

“We"ve had to do it many times before, you fly into locations to play one day internationals the day before and you have to cope. Test cricket is played in the head, so if you do let those things worry you then you will probably be affected but we''ve got very mentally tough cricketers in the side so I''m sure we''ll be able to put those things aside and concentrate on what you have to do."

Australia are still to work out whether or not they will take untried spinner Jason Krejza into Nagpur after arguably erring by not choosing him to bowl on a Delhi pitch that provided plenty of assistance for Indian part-time off spinner Virender Sehwag.

Hussey said that Krejza had to be seriously considered despite the obvious risk of playing a rookie in a match as important as any Test the Australians have played since the 2005 Ashes loss.


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