New York “Drop In” pitch deemed tricky but batters need to suck it up: Heinrich Klaasen

Heinrich Klaasen urges batters to adapt and play smart cricket, despite growing safety concerns highlighted by former England coach Andy Flower.

Nathan Gogela
Nathan Gogela

Last Updated: 2024-06-07

Louis Hobbs

4 minutes read

Heinrich Klaasen of South Africa poses for a portrait prior to the ICC Men's T20 Cricket World Cup West Indies & USA 2024

The pitch in New York, Nassau County International Cricket Stadium is proven to be a big talking point with 2 consecutive low scores on the surface. The stadium was specifically built for the T20 World Cup and a “drop in” pitch was used. Countries such as Australia utilise this method, as their grounds are multi-purpose, something the South Africans are accustomed to.

“Having played the previous game there against Sri Lanka, gives us an indication of what we can expect if the wicket stays the same. The outfield is also the other tricky part, the ball doesn’t really go quickly over the outfield. We must re-formulate our game a little bit, we’ve got experience playing on these type of conditions so we just need to go back in the memory bank and take some responsibility that it might not be the wicket we can tee off and hit boundaries but we need to play clever cricket. We need to make peace with that (wicket).”

Image Credits:  Alex Davidson-ICC/ICC via Getty Images

Image Credits: Alex Davidson-ICC/ICC via Getty Images

Conditions bordering on dangerous

Concerns have been growing over the state of the wicket, with former England coach Andy Flower hinting the conditions were “bordering on dangerous” during India’s win over Ireland.

“You can still hit boundaries, the side wicket isn’t that big. The wicket was a little bit too much for the bowlers side but that’s part of the game but as batters we just need to suck it up a bit,” said Klaasen.

“The wicket that we saw the last couple of games levelled the playing field. Hopefully we play on a new wicket, I know there is 3 to 4 strips. The strip India and Sri Lanka played on the score was 170 or 180 that is a decent score in America.”

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I don’t think (toss) will be a big factor.

Heinrich Klaasen

The importance of the toss

“Yes and no, it’s difficult to say it’s never in your control you have to deal with whatever is in your way. I think it will do little bit more in the morning and you get another opportunity to roll the wicket, it might get better but it still Is a tricky wicket. I don’t think (toss) will be a big factor.”

Statement from ICC

“T20 Inc and the ICC (International Cricket Council) recognise that the pitches used so far at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium have not played as consistently as we would all have wanted. The world class grounds team have been working hard since the conclusion of yesterday’s (Wednesday) game to remedy the situation and deliver the best possible surfaces for the remaining matches.”

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Nathan Gogela
Nathan Gogela Sports Writer

Nathan has over a decade of knowledge and experience, both as a former professional sportsperson and journalist. Nathan, a former radio sports presenter and producer is an award-winning community radio sports producer/presenter.