The rating of the pitch used for the first India vs Australia Test at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune as poor has created trouble for veteran pitch curator Daljit Singh. Daljit's job as chief curator of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is in line after the scathing report by the International Cricket Council (ICC) which rated the Pune pitch, prepared under his guidance, as "poor". In fact, Daljit was in-charge when the Nagpur pitch was also rated 'poor' by ICC match referee Jeff Crowe during the India vs South Africa Test match in November 2015 that ended inside three days with an emphatic victory for the hosts.
Another showcause by the ICC certainly has not gone unnoticed by the Committee of Administrators and BCCI CEO Rahul Johri will have to frame a reply within 14 days as per global body's norm.
"Even if there was instructions from team management, Daljit could have just ignored them. No one can pressurise the curator if he doesn't want to buckle down. But Daljit has had history of succumbing to demands of team management, giving one designer track after another. It's just that Nagpur and Pune were too bad even for his comfort. The COA might look into the matter," a top BCCI source told PTI.
Daljit's position will certainly be under threat as this is the second adverse ICC rating in 14 months.
There are some rumours in BCCI circle that one senior functionary among the existing lot called up in Pune at the behest of team management but that was merely a telephonic conversation and nothing documented.
Since there are no written instructions from the team management or BCCI, the buck stops at Daljit, who is already 79 and has survived as Lodha reforms doesn't specify the age of a curator like selectors (60 years) or administrators (70 years).
(With inputs from PTI)