India is a cricket worshiping nation. Nothing can be truer than this. So what is expected is that most of the innovations that have happened in cricket should have started from this nation. Unfortunately, this is not the case. The greatest of all changes that have happened in the game after centuries since its inception, the pink match ball has been embraced by many nations except for India who are still reluctant to let go of the iconic cherry red test ball. However, this is not the only thing that BCCI is known to be reluctant about. Many new aspects of international cricket, from Twenty20s Decision Review System, to embracing Test cricket under lights are still waiting for a whole-hearted welcome from the Indian Cricket Control board. This is quite unlikely for a country where Cricket is such a big deal that users of Fantasy cricket gaming apps range nowadays from a whopping number of 7-8 million and growing. More than many country’s gross population. So why this Pink Match Ball is still waiting for a clear green light, from the board to be able to enter the Indian cricket arena?
The problem lies, as a whole, with the reluctance of India to adopt the Day/Night test cricket. But if BCCI acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary is to be believed, it could only a matter of time before India plays with the pink ball. Mr. Chaudhury had stated that he brought the issue up to the officials and decision would be taken. However, there are reports that also suggest that India won’t a play a day-night Test because it is not part of the World Test Championship. Either way, India playing a Test match under lights at home seems like a matter that would take time. India and Bangladesh are the only two teams that are yet to play a Test match under lights. Australia has played a day-night Test as part of their home season for the last three years at Adelaide – against New Zealand, South Africa and England – and would definitely want to play one against India. Understandably, India wouldn’t want their first pink-ball experience to be in the tricky conditions at Adelaide and will want to play one at home before. Especially when the players shoulders the responsibilities of the dreams and hopes of their fans. Having a good Stat and winning is important especially in an age like this when fans also engage directly in the game when they play fantasy cricket online through their own device.
With Day/Night Test matches out of the question, the question that is concerning ardent cricket fans more that why is the nation so reluctant to adopt the Pink Ball. The pitch factor definitely plays in here. People are concerned about how the pink ball will behave in Indian conditions, with factors such as flatter pitches, dew factor and reliance on spinners. The Duleep Trophy in 2016-’17 and then in 2017-’18 were played under lights on an experimental basis and the pink ball didn’t get a vote of confidence from most players. Many Indian cricketers expressed that the pink ball offers very little assistance to the seamers and particularly becomes difficult to play with during under dew factor. The other problems with the ball, manufactured by Kookaburra at their factory in Melbourne, are the slower wear-and-tear which reduces swing, the visibility of the black seam, and how conducive it for spinners. The spin factor is something that can be worked upon on a turning track, but might not be effective on flatter ones, according to a batsman who played Duleep Trophy. Shannon Gill, the Head of Communications of Kookburra replied to this concern that the structural changes between the pink and red ball are made to ensure visibility under lights. Unfortunately, the structural changes are what keeping the ball from getting adopted by the Indian Cricketers. The Pink ball is also susceptible to wear and tear which affects its visibility once the ball gets covered with dirt and dust. Nevertheless, Gill is sanguine about the progress the pink ball is making and stated that players are just sceptical to adopt this new ball because they are usually used to playing with ball of a particular color and seam. It is just a adjustment phase he stated and before much time, we can the pink balls hitting our pitch.
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