The concept of Day and Night tests caught everyone in a frenzy last year as watching Australia and New Zealand play under lights was magical indeed. To top it all, the game had turned out to be an icing on the cake as it was a thrilling test, which Australia won narrowly in a fourth innings chase.
However, the buzz seems to have been doused after the views of Cricket South Africa reflect no confidence from the format. Recently, Cricket Australia had proposed a Day and Night test between the two teams later this year during the Australian summer; but that is on the verge of being rejected by the Proteas.
As per sources in Cricket South Africa, the Proteas are not too keen to indulge in day and night test matches. “Not a single one of our players has played with the pink ball under lights at any level of cricket and, despite the fairly widespread praise of the concept in Australia, player feedback from Australia and New Zealand indicates that there are still significant on-field concerns,” Tony Irish, the chief executive of the South Africa Cricketers Association, revealed to the media.
Irish also added that some of the players too were not too comfortable with the pink ball under lights. He regarded the lack of visibility as a crucial factor in his views defying day and night tests. “A number of players from both teams said they had trouble seeing the ball in the evening and that conditions had to be doctored to preserve the condition of the ball. The players are not totally against the concept or anti-innovation, but feel that this is still very experimental and this is obviously an important series for them. They don’t want to be out there not knowing what to expect in what could be a match which decides the series. More work needs to be done on making the ball more durable.”
To sum the feelings from the South African camp, Irish said, “I think it’s highly unlikely that CSA will agree.” “From a South African point of view, the players feel it would be extremely disadvantageous to agree to play a day-nighter at this stage and in such a big series.”