Back in 1989, Lord Northbrook Cricket Club, one of the famous clubs at Azad Maidan appointed a new curator-Mr.Ravi. Since then he has been there looking after the pitch of their club. He has seen couple of generations pass through that place and he admits that a lot has been changed since the time he joined. “I am in business for last 25 years. Since the time I started my job as curator, I have been associated with Lord Northbrook Cricket Club. There has been a special bond with this wicket and with this club as well for me. The methods then were a lot different. Having said that I don’t really think that it has changed a lot when it comes to nature of pitch. It is as good as what it was for all those previous years,” said Mr. Ravi.
“During the start of Kanga league the top of wicket looks green which is but obvious. There is good amount of grass on outfield too. We have to ensure that there is no small pit anywhere in the outfield. It might harm a player while he is fielding. In Kanga league the wicket favors bowlers and then it remains neutral, “said the curator.
“I have seen that teams are opting to ball first here in Kanga league matches. Most of them are ending on winning side. I think naturally since beginning this pitch becomes lively when it rains. In one the matches in Kanga league last year a team was bowled out twice meaning the 3 innings were completed in one and half days. Certainly this is a result oriented wicket and hence teams look forward to play here as they can earn those crucial points by winning the games here.”
Mr. Ravi never played cricket with leather ball but he has a good knowledge about the soil quality. “Initially it looked like a tedious process but now having done this for 25 years everything looks like a cake walk. We can make any kind of pitch at the same place if we are specially instructed in that manner. After almost one and half months of the start of season that is somewhere in mid-November it doesn’t provide much help to bowlers. Hence I said it remains neutral and winning or losing a game completely depends on your capabilities,” said Mr.Ravi.
Ravi says that he would certainly like to see greener outfield even after rainy season has ended. “Now we see that everywhere grass is spread nicely. But it becomes difficult to maintain this look of ground once the rain has stopped. Many people pass through this outfield daily and hence the grass can’t sustain here. We see that in other countries they have green outfields even for club games. We are making an effort to achieve the same thing. It will be beneficial for players to field there and they can learn new techniques of fielding which are seen regularly at international levels. Grass will also avoid the injuries to these players,” explained Mr.Ravi.
Ravi said that MCA has been providing soil to put in the outfield currently. Because of that the curator’s job is made simpler. “My aim to provide a quality wicket and good outfield as well for my club. So that we can produce cricketers to match the international quality. I just hope that this wicket will maintain its reputation as bowler’s friendly wicket at least in Kanga league.” Said Mr. Ravi. Ravi’s ideas can turn out to be revolutionary as we can see outfields getting better on the main grounds in the city.