Thursday, September 10, 2009

First day-night Test edges closer

The prospect of Lord's holding the world's first day-night Test match next summer will remain on the shelf until cricket's administrators can work out which colour ball can be used fairly under floodlights.

The white ball in use for many years for floodlit one-day internationals is not an option when players are also dressed in white, as they always have been for Test cricket.

The guardians of the game at the Marylebone Cricket Club must therefore solve the problem before day-night Test cricket can be seriously considered, let alone scheduled.

That point was made today by an England and Wales Cricket Board spokesman, reacting with some surprise to reports that an inaugural day-night Test between the hosts and Bangladesh has been mutually agreed and therefore simply needs International Cricket Council approval to go ahead in May or June next year.

"Floodlit Test cricket will not take place until the appropriate ball has been tested and approved," said the spokesman.

Pink and orange balls have so far been trialled, but it is not yet thought either fits the purpose - while a traditional red ball is obviously not feasible once darkness falls.

It has already been confirmed one of the two Tests set to take place against Bangladesh will be at Headingley, while Lord's has staged a match against the early-season tourists for several consecutive seasons.

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