Stuff – Two days out from the second test between the Black Caps and the West Indies, and the Seddon Park pitch sits under cover – not because of rain, but because the Hamilton hot spell has it in danger of over-cooking.

Summary

  • Two days out from the second test between the Black Caps and the West Indies, and the Seddon Park pitch sits under cover – not because of rain, but because the Hamilton hot spell has it in danger of over-cooking.
  • It’s a nice change for groundsman Karl Johnson, who’s a much happier chap nearly nine months on from the last test at the venue – where wet weather disrupted the buildup, then rain ruined New Zealand’s chances of a final-day series-squaring victory against South Africa.
  • But despite the deck being advanced in preparation, don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s not green – the hue on show when Johnson peeled back the covers for Black Caps coach Mike Hesson to have a gander and a yak on Thursday afternoon, as his side look to whitewash the Windies after their impressive innings and 67-run win in the first test in Wellington.
  • READ MORE: * Laying down the law on Wagner * Stokes named in ODI team * England open a ‘few scars’ * Gayle a challenge for CD”Asian teams and even the West Indians, they see these pitches and they wonder whether our mowers are broken down,” Johnson said, in reference to New Zealand pitches now starting out green to provide some balance between bat and ball, because they don’t tend break up later in the piece.
  • This test will mark a return to the Patumahoe clay – which has generally been the go-to for longer-form cricket at Seddon, providing more pace and bounce than the Waikari (which is now unavailable to source so is being top-dressed with Kakanui) used for white-ball formats, though which was requested by New Zealand Cricket at the start of last season for the last test here, effectively to nullify the Proteas’ pace attack.


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