India vs England

Match info: India v England Test Series 2012 at Sardar Patel (Gujarat) Stadium, Ahmedabad - 1st Test

Date: 19th Nov 2012 Status: Day 5 of 5 Umpires: A S Dar and A L Hill

Home team and score Away team score

India

521/8 Dec (160.0 Overs)
80/1 (15.3 Overs)

Result

England

191 All out (74.2 Overs)
406 All out (154.3 Overs)

India win by 9 wickets

  • Last Updated: November 15 2012, 3:49 GMT

We run the rule over the venue for the first Test between India and England in Ahmedabad.

Dhoni gets to grips with the conditions in Ahmedabad.
Dhoni gets to grips with the conditions in Ahmedabad.

Established: 1982
Capacity: 54,000
Floodlights: Yes
Ends: Adani Pavilion End, GMDC End
Home Team: Gujarat, Rajasthan Royals
Head Groundsman: Bagira Thakur
Test History: 11 Tests (3 home wins, 2 away win, 6 draws)
Last 10 Tosses: 10 bat first (2 wins, 2 losses, 6 draws)

Overview
One of the less frequented and less popular international grounds, the Sardar Patel Stadium hosted its first Test in 1983 and has been the venue for just 10 more.

The 50-acre plot on the banks of the Sarbarmati River was donated by the state government, and the formidable stadium took just nine months to complete. It is also known as the Motera, after the area in which it is located, and is formerly known as Gujarat Stadium.

While the ground has witnessed some grand feats, such as Sunil Gavaskar's 10,000th Test run in 1986-87 and Kapil Dev's 432nd wicket, which took him past Richard Hadlee as Test cricket's leading wicket-taker, the stadium fell into disrepair before it was refurbished in 2010 after Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi became president of the Gujarat Cricket Association.

The sides will have to contend with a fiercely dry heat, while hopes of a result could be ruined if recent matches are anything to go by - while the pitch produced three results in its first four Tests, it has only yielded two in the last seven, but has since been relayed.

Last Time Out
Five centuries, four half-tons and over 1,200 runs in total made for a lame draw in November 2010's first Test.

Such was the low, slow, dead nature of the pitch, spinner Daniel Vettori took the new ball and even Ross Taylor and Brendon McCullum had a bowl.

Indian cricket writer Dileep Premachandran later asked: "Why mouth platitudes about the sanctity of Test cricket when matches are played out in front of paltry crowds on pitches designed to drag the game off to the post-mortem table?"

Thank goodness, then, advice was heeded and the pitch relayed for this week's series opener.

Happy Hunting Ground
With plenty of runs on offer it comes as no surprise that Sachin Tendulkar has scored a double-century here, although his ground average of 44.92 is some 11 runs lower than his career aggregate. 60.54 and 48.08 respectively here. Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Virender Sehwag and even Harbhajan Singh have also scored centuries here.

Harbhajan Singh, again, has picked up two five-wicket hauls - and 29 wickets in total - in Ahmedabad, including the impressive figures of seven for 62 against Sri Lanka in 2005.

England's current crop have never played a Test here, though Kevin Pietersen and Jonathan Trott will take inspiration from centuries scored on the stadium's B field against Haryana recently. Seamers Stuart Meaker and Graham Onions, too, drew help from the reserve pitch.

They Said
"The pitch was two-paced and a bit up and down at the end of the day. Hopefully it looks like it will flatten out a little bit more. It shouldn't be too bad. We have to see over the next couple of days." - New Zealand batsman Jesse Ryder after day one in 2010.

"The pitch will get slower as we go on. You have to be really patient as a batsman." - India batsman Virender Sehwag after day one in 2010.

"You would have seen my reaction after we won the toss. I was really thrilled and happy. I know what kind of wicket this is. It can get really tough for the bowlers on the first day." - India spinner Harbhajan Singh after day two in 2010.

"The wicket deteriorating and aiding some turn. I don't know if we knew if the ball was going to do too much, we put it demanding areas and we got the result." - New Zealand batsman Kane Williamson after day four in 2010.

"This pitch should be a more sporting one. It will help seamers a little bit early in the match, but spinners are likely to dominate on the last two days." - curator Dhiraj Parsana.

Weather Forecast
Sunny throughout the five days, with not a drop of rain predicted - the epitome of an Indian forecast in November, really.Very hot, too, with temperatures set to hang around 33 degrees Celsius.

Conclusion
Conditions on the B field for the tour match offered little relation with those for the Test. The pitch in the main stadium was relayed as recently as September, with its clay content changed from pond clay to farm clay - and reduced. More sand has been added too, in order to have the pitch break up quicker.

The new pitch is yet to hold a fixture of significance, so predicting how it will play will only result in imbalance, though batting first remains the priority - and certainly sticks with the ground's history. The last 10 captains to win the toss have done so, with the only one not to do so, instead bowling first, losing the match.

Personnel-wise, both sides will consider playing two specialist spinners, though only India are likely to go with that combination - unless Stuart Broad and Steven Finn's injuries sneak Monty Panesar into England's plans.


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