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Calls to replace SCG pitch with drop-in wicket ‘absolutely ludicrous’: Trent Copeland

JAMES WILLIS

NSW fast bowler Trent Copeland has branded calls for the SCG pitch to be replaced with a drop-in wicket as ‘absolutely ludicrous’.

The state of the SCG playing surface has been hotly debated this week after Melbourne Victory star Terry Antonis injured his knee after appearing to slip on the centre wicket area. All four major Football codes have been forced to share the venue following the demolition of Allianz Stadium but the historic oval might not be capable of handling the increased load.

“I wish some pretty senior figures in other codes would stop the flippant use of ‘oh, come on, let’s just get a drop in wicket at the SCG, that would solve all our problems,” Copeland tells James Willis.

“The biggest issue here is these sporting codes maybe signed up to say ‘yeah, no worries, we’ll play at the SCG‘ without actually thinking about how many actual codes are playing there.”

The man voted the NSW Blues most valuable Sheffied Shield player explains from a cricketer’s perspective why it’s vital to protect the integrity of the SCG pitch in its current form.

“The culture and the history of the SCG being a spin friendly wicket, reverse swing, it’s one of our biggest assets against touring teams,” he said

“If we don’t have characteristics at each of our test cricket venues, we’re just losing the heart and soul of cricket in this country, that’s coming from a cricket fan’s point of view rather than a player.”

Evidence for this, Copeland argues, can be clearly seen at the MCG where the pitch is a modern drop in wicket which, in recent years, has produced some of the most boring boxing day tests on record.

“The Boxing Day test match on a drop-in wicket has become a little bit benign and somewhat unwatchable at times.” Copeland said.

Copeland points to the history books which show how Cricket, Aussie Rules and Rugby League have successfully shared the SCG for decades with the centre square issues few and far between.

“I just don’t get why all of a sudden, people are immediately saying that the wicket square in the middle is the issue, it’s simply not the fact.” he said.

Copeland’s message to those calling for the SCG pitch to be replaced with a drop in wicket is blunt and unwavering.

“My opinion is that it would be absolutely ludicrous to even consider it.”

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JAMES WILLIS
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