The pitch at the Shere Bangla National Stadium has been rated "below average" by the ICC for its performance in the second Test between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. As a result, the Mirpur ground has received one demerit point, which will remain on its record for a five-year period. If the venue reaches a total of five demerit points during the five-year period, it will be suspended from hosting any international cricket for 12 months.
Before, during and after the Test match, the pitch received a lot of flak for being too dry and spin-friendly. Sri Lanka crushed Bangladesh by 215 runs in a contest in which the highest team total was 226. Spinners took 30 of the 38 wickets that fell to the bowlers, with both sides fielding just one seamer each.
In his remarks, match referee David Boon, who gave the rating, said: "From day one, there was evidence of the ball breaking the pitch surface, which resulted in uneven bounce throughout the match, along with inconsistent turn, which was even excessive at times. This pitch produced a contest that was too heavily skewed in favour of the bowlers, and didn't give the batsmen a fair chance to display their skills."
It has been a particularly chastening time for the BCB, with the Chittagong pitch for the first Test also receiving a below-average rating from Boon. That game produced the second-highest match aggregate - 1533 runs - in Bangladesh, and the lowest wicket count - 24 - in matches lasting 2000 or more balls.
Last September, the Shere Bangla National Stadium received a 'below average' rating from the ICC for the pitch for the Bangladesh-Australia Test at the venue, and a "poor" rating for its outfield.