Melbourne Cricket Ground
MCG curator Matt Page will have heaved a sigh of relief (AFP Photo)

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has rated the Melbourne pitch which hosted the third India-Australia Test as ‘average’ a year after it was rated poor for producing a drab Ashes draw.

The rating Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) has been given by the ICC is the bare minimum passing mark for a cricket pitch which keeps it from copping demerit points. A below average rating would have resulted in one demerit point while a poor rating three points.

A pitch that ends up collecting five demerit points across five years will lose international status.

India regained their lead in the ongoing four-Test series with a 137-run win at MCG that saw the contest lasting a little over four days. The first two days of the Boxing Day Test were dominated by India batsmen which saw Cheteshwar Pujara hitting a century raising fears of another draw. But from Day 3 onwards, bowlers began calling the shots as batting became difficult on the pitch that began showing visible signs of wear and tear.

A bouncy Perth pitch that was the venue of the second Test also produced a result with the hosts claiming a victory with ICC rating it as average too. However, several former cricketers and current Australia coach Justin Lager were left baffled by the ‘average’ rating.