New Delhi: Always an avid observer of all things that's cricket, Bishen Singh Bedi, let out his dissatisfaction even before India won the Freedom series at Nagpur on Friday. He was clearly not happy with the state or rather standard of the pitch, which many termed 'diabolical'.
The former India captain invoked Bombay-born Douglas Jardine's infamous Bodyline series to draw comparisons with Virat Kohli and Team India's tactics in the series against South Africa.
The legendary spinner was quoted by Mid Day as saying, “I hope I am not making a sweeping statement here, but captain Virat Kohli will have to answer history just like Douglas Jardine had to answer history for his Bodyline tactics in 1932-33.”
Talking to Mid Day on Thursday, Bedi said, "We are reducing the competitive edge of Test cricket. Kohli will be judged because of the behind-the-scenes people who have caused this scenario. I can't understand what's the point in having such pitches. You would have beaten this South African side anyway. It is not only commercially viable."
He also dismissed the defensive argument that preparing a rank turner was part of taking home advantage, and said, "You want me to believe this is home advantage? Pitches are not meant to turn on Day One itself."
"To make a hard and bouncy track, you need some knowledge and a particular kind of soil, but here you didn't need anything, just don't prepare the wicket and that has been the case in Nagpur," he added.
Bedi was also critical of how it was played out in the home turf of BCCI president Shashank Manohar and in the presence of Anil Kumble, chief of International Cricket Council's cricket committee.
Further, the former India coach lamented that a top-bowler like Ravichandran Ashwin — who was adjudged man of the match for his 12-wicket haul — has been pulled down by such unsporting pitches.
"Ashwin is an intelligent bowler and he does not need such kind of surfaces to be successful — Ravindra Jadeja probably needs such wickets, but not Ashwin. You are pulling Ashwin down with such wickets," he opined.