The third and final Test between South Africa and India will be played at the New Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg from tomorrow. Hosts South Africa have already won the series 2-0 and will be looking for a clean sweep; as Team India looks to save some face in the series.
There were talks of the pitch at the New Wanderers being fast and furious in the buildup to the Test and now the curator of the ground Butuel Buthelezi has confirmed the same. Speaking to CricketNext, Buthelezi said, "The South Africans are happy with the wicket. It will have pace and bounce and that is how wickets here play. I don't think there are any questions within the team as they looked pleased after the boys took a look at the wicket this morning.”
Buthelezi continued, "Even the Indians liked how the wicket looks as they gave me a thumbs up on Monday afternoon after taking a close look at the wicket. It will play true and both teams will have the same conditions over the next five days."
Answering the question about why Indians decided to practice at the outdoor facility instead of the centre wicket, Buthelezi said, "Well, that is for the team management to decide. The South Africans did train next to the match wicket and if the Indians wanted they could have also done that."
"These are little things that happen with training and all. No reason to blow it out. The Indians found the wicket damp and we just rolled it and they were happy," he said.
Even coach Ravi Shastri said that team was preparing to play on a bouncy and fast wicket.
He said, "Well there is grass on the track and you expect that overseas. We are not here to moan about the tracks because like I said at the start of the game both teams play on the same surface. The good thing though is people won't crib and moan when matches in India get over in two and a half days. Neither will they ask me what kind of track are you playing on. We are not here to complain, we have taken 20 wickets. When you take 20 wickets you have a chance to win. If we had batted better we might have well done that.”