The International Cricket Council (ICC) today (January 30) rated the Wanderers Stadium pitch as "poor". It also termed the 22-yard surface as "hazardous" for batting.
Wanderers wicket had come in for heavy criticism as it hosted the third and final Test between South Africa and India. The Virat Kohli-led side won by 63 runs on the fourth day on Saturday (January 27). The home team claimed the series 2-1.
Also read: How the pitches are rated
Batsmen on both sides found it difficult to bat. India had won the toss and batted first. They were bowled out for 187. In reply, the hosts scored 194. In the second innings, India made 247.
Chasing 241 for victory, South Africa were all out for 177 but not before some drama on the third day when play was halted for 20 minutes due to the dangerous behaviour of the pitch. Opener Dean Elgar was hit by a delivery. Earlier, Indian batsmen too had taken blows to their bodies.
On Tuesday, match referee Andy Pycroft rated the pitch as a "poor one". The stadium also received three demerit points. If a venue accumulates five demerit points it will be suspended from hosting international matches.
"The pitch prepared for the final Test was a poor one. It had excessively steep and unpredictable bounce, and excessive seam movement. It deteriorated quickly as the match progressed, which made batting extremely difficult and hazardous, resulting in the medical staff from both the sides having to come onto the field of play multiple times to treat their batsmen," Pycroft said.
"As the on-field umpires are also responsible for the players' safety, they expressed concerns about the behavior of the pitch, and debated after day three if it was appropriate to continue the match. In the end, the umpires made the decision to continue and the Test reached its natural conclusion on day four. However, there was still excessive variable bounce and seam movement when the Test match ended," he added.
About pitch ratings
If a pitch or outfield is rated as being substandard, that venue will be allocated a number of demerit points.
One demerit point will be awarded to venues whose pitches are rated by the match referees as below average, while three and five demerit points will be awarded to venues whose pitches are marked as poor and unfit, respectively.
No demerit point will be awarded when the outfield is rated as below average, but two and five demerit points will be awarded to venues whose outfields are marked as poor and unfit, respectively.
Demerit points will remain active for a rolling five-year period.
When a venue accumulates five demerit points (or crosses that threshold), it will be suspended from hosting any international cricket for a period of 12 months, while a venue will be suspended from staging any international cricket for 24 months when it reaches the threshold of 10 demerit points.