The Australian cricket pitches have changed and are becoming more like the ones in the Indian subcontinent, according to Sachin Tendulkar, India’s highest run-getter Down Under with 1,809 scored in 20 matches.
“The surfaces, I find, have changed, because they are looking for more drop-in pitches. I remember watching one of the games, Australia was bowling and on day one the ball went two bounces to the ’keeper,” he said in an interview with Sportstar before the beginning of the series.
Tendulkar also spoke about the pitch at WACA, Perth. The second India-Australia Test match will be played in the same city, but at a different venue — the multi-purpose Optus stadium.
“It’s the hardness of the surface, pace and bounce. Things have changed dramatically, though. When I played there in the 1990s, there were not many high-scoring games in Perth.
“Sometimes 500 would be scored in both innings put together. But if you see in the last decade or so, Perth has been a happy hunting ground for the batters. They score there in hundreds. Last time England played Australia, close to 1,300 runs were scored in just three innings.”
The Master Blaster recalled his first Australian trip as one of the defining tours of his life. “Of course, the first hundred came in England, but in that era, if you scored runs in England and in Australia, you were said to have arrived. So, scoring runs in England and Australia was really important; well, scoring runs everywhere is important, but in particular I would say Australia, given the bowling strength that they had,” he said, adding: “During the phase I played, the bowlers that I encountered, they ruled world cricket in those days. To be able to go there and express yourself and do it the way you want, I was quite pleased about that.”
Notably, Tendulkar scored Test centuries in Melbourne, Sydney, Perth as well as Adelaide, missing out on one in Brisbane, where he played just two matches.