Is there anything more Aussie than spending five sweltering days in front of the box, watching blokes in whites batting at a red ball? The monotonous, nasal commentary punctuated by a sudden – almost unbelieving – howzat!? The tea breaks, Merv stretching, and close of play as the sun sets. Now that’s cricket .
But this summer, we’ll be trying a new game on for size, with Cricket Australia pushing ahead with plans for a revolutionary day-night Test match.
The goal, according to the sports body, is to make cricket more accessible to fans (who presumably have jobs and things like that). What they’re really saying is that, in this new fast-bowling world, there’s no room for five days of Test cricket. Who has the time?
Cricket Australia tested the new format in the 2014-15 Sheffield Shield season and have slated the first ever Test match under lights for the Aussie tour to New Zealand in November.
But while Australia seems dead keen on the idea, the Kiwis are saying “no ball”.
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NZ Players Association chief executive Heath Mills put the idea to his players and their response was “overwhelmingly” negative.
Mills says, “We don’t get to play Australia very often so it’s a rare chance to go up against them. For some of these players it’s going to be the most important Test series of their careers, they don’t’ want anything that could be seen to devalue it.
To add insult to injury, the Aussie board is trialling the use of a pink ball to make it easier for player to see.
“To play it under lights, with a pink ball, in conditions they’re not familiar with makes it feel like a bit of an exhibition,” Mills told AAP.
First there was the World Series Cup, then coloured uniforms and limited overs. What next? Well, possibly, a pink ball.
How do you feel about the idea of day-night Test matches? Will it still be the same?