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Indian Test specialist batsman Cheteshwar Pujara feels that the day/night pink-ball Test is very different than the traditional red-ball Test match.
Cheteshwar Pujara featured during India’s only day/night pink-ball Test match in last November (against Bangladesh at Kolkata). While the host side Indian team won that match by an innings and 46 runs, Pujara scored 55 runs in that game.
Earlier, in the 2016/17 Duleep Trophy, which was the day/night pink-ball match, Pujara scored 166, 31 and 256 not out respectively.
Pujara, who has played 77 Tests, feels this new style of Test cricket is very different than the traditional red-ball Test match especially due to the different ball’s pace and visibility.
Pujara told on the ‘Sony Ten Pit Stop’ show, “First of all, to speak about the Day and Night Test or (to play) with the pink ball, I think it is different from what we are used to with the red ball. Although it is still the same format, but the (pink) ball’s pace and visibility is very different. As a batsman you need to get used to it.”
While the cricketers regularly follow the red-ball matches, Pujara feels that it is not easy to maintain performances in the pink-ball game without having the proper net sessions.
Pujara said, “It won’t be very easy, because you need to have such net sessions. To do that at the domestic level, it is not easy. If any upcoming player is coming, he is used to playing with the SG red ball in Ranji Trophy, so when you play him for India, he is ready for this format.”
I feel it will be a challenge for a young player who is coming in and playing a pink-ball Test: Cheteshwar Pujara
The 32-year-old Pujara further pointed out the major issues which the batsmen can face with the pink-ball if they don’t get proper preparations.
Pujara claimed, “He is ready for a Test match. But when he comes to play with the Pink Ball, he will not have that much of an experience and that many net sessions also won’t have happened, so I feel it will be a challenge for young player who is coming in and playing a pink Ball Test. But, yes guys (players) who have already played with pink ball in some domestic tournament and who have played one of the Pink Ball Test match, they will get used to it, but it is a different challenge altogether for a batsman.”
In the late of this year, India will tour in Australia for the full international series, including the four-match Test series. The second Test of this series will be the day/night pink-ball Test match at Adelaide Oval, Adelaide (11th-15th December), which will be India’s first away day/night pink-ball Test match while Australia have already experienced seven overall day/night pink-ball Test matches.
From his few pink-ball game experiences, Pujara believes that the pink-ball might swing more, but it may not happen in Australia due to Kookaburra ball. He also added that the Australian pitches are very good for the batsmen.
Pujara said, “I think they (Australian) bowlers will get more pace and bounce off the pitch, from what I have realised so far with the Pink Ball. Apart from this, the ball might swing more, but usually Kookaburra pink ball doesn’t swing much, maybe the new ball might swing a bit, but once the ball gets old, it will be a good ball to bat against. Because be it the Kookaburra red ball or pink ball… and if you are playing in Australia, it is one of the best pitches to bat on.”
In the India tour of Australia 2020/21, they will play the four-match Test series from 3rd December 2020 to 7th January 2021.
In their last Australia tour in the 2018/19 summer, India won their first-ever Test and ODI bilateral series in this country. Cheteshwar Pujara won the Player of the Series award at the end of the Test series for scoring highest runs in that series (521 runs).