Former Australia wicketkeeper Ian Healy has slammed Vidarbha Cricket Association pitch curators after the visiting team was denied a chance to practice at the centre wicket of the Jamtha pitch on Sunday. Healy called for strict action and demanded International Cricket Council’s (ICC) intervention in the matter, ensuring touring teams get the facilities to prepare in the right manner for high-profile Test matches.

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Reports claimed that Australia were denied a chance to practice on the centre wicket of the Nagpur pitch due to watering by the ground staff. An Australian Associated Press report claimed that Australia had requested the ground staff in Nagpur to not water the center wickets after the end of the Test match as they intended to train at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium on Sunday and Monday. 

However, the curators watered the wicket on Saturday after the match got over and Australia’s plans to practice were scuppered. Meanwhile, Ian Healy called this whole episode embarrassing and pathetic. 

"I think it's a pathetic effort. It's really embarrassing, the scuppering of our plans to get some practice sessions on that Nagpur wicket," Ian Healy told SEN Radio, taking a dig at the curators in Nagpur. "That's not good, that's just not good for cricket."

"The ICC needs to step in here and say, 'Our nations need to trust each other much better, if you request certain conditions to practice and prepare on, you must get them'," he said. "For them to water the wicket unceremoniously when it was requested for practice is horrible and that has to improve."

Notably, Healy was the first one to ignite the pitch debate as the former Australian had claimed that Australia would beat India comfortably if the hosts prepare “fair pitches”. The former wicketkeeper had also alleged that Australia were denied quality preparation by India.