Rohit Sharma hopes for quick acclimatisation of NY pitch ahead of T20 WC

10:19 AM May 31, 2024 | PTI |

Marvelling at the newly-constructed Nassau County International Cricket Stadium here, India skipper Rohit Sharma underlined the need for his team to get acclimatised to the pitch and conditions quickly ahead of their T20 World Cup opener against Ireland on June 5.


However, Rohit and company will get a chance to check the nature of the pitch and overall conditions when they face Bangladesh in a warm-up match here on Saturday. It’s also India’s lone training game ahead of the ICC marquee event. The warm-up match is important from India’s perspective because their matches will start at 10.30 AM local time and the players need to get used to day-time matches after playing under lights in the IPL for the last two months. ”We’re looking to understand the conditions more importantly (before the tournament proper) as we haven’t been here before,” Rohit told ICC.

The Mumbaikar emphasised the need for his side to get into a ”rhythm” before the real action starts, and he wanted to use this side game as a springboard.

”(We will) try and make the most of the conditions, get used to what it’s going to be like on June 5 when we play our first game,” he added.

The challenge for the Indians will be to adapt to the drop-in turf here, something they don’t come across very often in international cricket. ”It’s just about getting into that rhythm of getting the feel of the ground, pitch and stuff like that,” he said.


Rohit was part of the first batch of India cricketers to arrive here on May 26, along with Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Shivam Dube, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav and Axar Patel.

Moving beyond the match routines, Rohit also found time to take in the beauty of the venue.

”It looks beautiful. It’s quite an open ground. When we come here and play our first game, I just can’t wait to feel the atmosphere in the stadium,” he said.

”It’s a decent capacity as well. Hopefully it’s gonna be a good one.” Rohit hoped that fans will throng the venue for their matches.

”People in New York will be very interested in coming and watching the World Cup, as it is happening for the first time here.

”I’m pretty sure all the fans across various teams are quite excited and looking forward to this tournament. And also as players (we) can’t wait to get started,” he noted.

Worry for Bangladesh

Skipper Najmul Hossain Shanto too appreciated the excellent construction here, but he would not have forgotten Bangladesh’s shocking series defeat against the USA a few days back.

The United States, largely constituted by expat players, scored a stunning 2-1 win over Bangladesh in a three-match T20I series at home last week, signalling that they are no mere pushovers.

Hence, Shanto might be hoping for a quick turnaround against formidable India, even though it’s a warm-up match at this scenic stadium.

”To be very honest I wasn’t expecting anything like this but we all followed on social media how the wicket looks like, how the ground would be, and we are very excited as to what is going to happen here,” said Shanto.

The 25-year-old top-order batter then gushed over the venue.

”It’s unbelievable. I think it’s crazy. I mean we all saw on the internet there was nothing (three months ago). Now, it looks like a proper stadium and feels great,” he said.

The Eastern grandstand (in particular), I didn’t expect it to be like this,” he added.


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