The date and venue of the historic first-ever day-night Test match has been decided. But there are still concerns among Australian fast bowlers Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson over the use of the pink Kookaburra balls.
Starc, who has had first hand experience with the pink ball, cited his worries saying that it is difficult for the outfielders to spot the ball under the lights. In a day-night Sheffield Shield fixture at the Adelaide Oval last year, Starc could not see the ball while fielding and he still thinks that the experiment with the pink ball was unconvincing.
“I couldn’t see the ball at night on the boundary. So, I’m not sure how the crowd is going to see it. Time will tell if it works with the crowds and cricketers,” Starc said.
Kookaburra has claimed that these balls are designed in such a way that the batsmen can clearly spot them under the lights. However, many fear for the batsmen and are not amused with the tradition of Test match cricket being altered.
Mitchell Johnson expressed his views on the issue saying that tradition needs to be maintained. He said, “One thing I love is the tradition of Tests, things like the Baggy Green and little things like wearing the woollen jumper. We had an option to change that but we wanted to keep that as a tradition. I think tradition in the game is very important.”
Australian all-rounder Shane Watson, however, said that only after playing under such conditions with the pink ball, can the cricket fraternity decide on this matter.
Coach Darren Lehmann, too, has decided to comment on this only after a few games have been played. He said, “Only time will tell if it’s right or wrong. We’ve got to give it a crack and I think it’s important.”
The first ever day-night Test is set to be played between Australia and New Zealand at the Adelaide Oval starting November 27.
Whether or not the pink balls will stay, only time will tell.