MELBOURNE – Cricket Australia (CA) sought to allay pitch concerns for the Boxing Day test against New Zealand after the surface at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) was deemed unsafe to continue a Sheffield Shield match on Saturday.
Western Australia batsmen Shaun Marsh and Marcus Stoinis sustained several blows to the body struggling to adjust to the unpredictable bounce of the surface in the contest against Victoria.
Umpires Phillip Gillespie and Geoff Joshua initially asked the groundstaff to roll the pitch but eventually abandoned the opening day's play after consulting the players and head groundsman Matt Page.
CA subsequently issued a statement, saying it would work with ground staff to ensure the best possible wicket at the MCG for their trans-Tasman rivals.
Its Head of Cricket Operations Peter Roach said he was disappointed at the suspension of play at a venue where two other Sheffield Shield matches went without any incident.