Jayawardene concerned about feasibility of pink ball in subcontinent

Prince Singh / 10 July 2016

Ever since its inception, the day-night Test has created a lot of debate. One of the most important cause for it is the feasibility of pink ball in all condition . After the rise of T20 cricket, the longest format of the game has seen a steady decline in its popularity and the day-night Test is seen as a potential step to draw the fans to the stadium once again. However, there are still a lot of ifs and buts surrounding this latest innovation.

Writing in his column for SportStar, former Sri Lankan skipper Mahela Jayawardene too expressed his concern over the feasibility of pink ball. Jayawardene feels that while the pink ball cricket has the potential to attract fans to the stadiums, the players will have to go through a challenging phase of adjustment.

“The first-ever day-night Test match in Adelaide late last year was certainly well-supported,” he wrote. “By all accounts, spectators let their hair down and enjoyed themselves. However, for the players, the cricket was brutally tough on a grassy pitch and the game lasted just three days. And that, in a nutshell, is the problem for day-night cricket: bowlers will run amok as they exploit difficult night-time conditions on pitches that have extra grass.”

The legendary batsman said that conditions in the Asian countries are not suitable for pink ball cricket with dew being one of the major concerns. He said that improving the ball might improve the matter.

“This is a particularly problematic issue for Asian countries keen to introduce the concept,” he pointed out. “Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh all face serious problems with the dew at night. This is manageable in one-day cricket – although it still often unfairly disadvantages one team – but will be a huge issue for Test cricket. If combined with the grassy pitches, the dew will create treacherous conditions and wickets will tumble.

“The only countries where I can see day-night working reasonably well would be Australia, South Africa and England where dew is not severe. If the ball can be improved a little more, then perhaps we can see some good cricket.”

The former batsman also warned against an overdose of day-night Test. He said:“What is far more important in terms of Test cricket’s survival, is giving the format proper context and end the current method of bilateral scheduling.”