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Cricket Buzz: Players unconvinced about pink ball for day-night Tests

Last updated on: July 01, 2014 17:16 IST

Cricket Buzz: Players unconvinced about pink ball for day-night Tests

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The Australian Cricketers' Association says the pink ball is not ready for day-night Tests and have cautioned administrators not to rush into the concept.

Australia trialled night sessions using the pink ball during the domestic Sheffield Shield season and has mooted hosting a first day-night Test against New Zealand in November 2015.

"The overwhelming majority of players believe the pink Kookaburra ball isn't yet ready for Test cricket," ACA chief executive Paul Marsh said in a statement on the association's website on Tuesday (www.auscricket.com.au).

"They've told us that it went soft very quickly, didn't swing, didn't seam and didn't reverse swing. As such it is a ball that is very difficult to get batsmen out with, but also difficult to score runs against because it gets soft quickly.

"Only 11 percent of players rated last season's Sheffield Shield trial a success and just a quarter felt it provided a fair conTest between bat and ball.

"These stats are significant because they challenge the notion that Day/ Night Tests are a fait accompli.

"The enthusiasm some have for the concept is understandable, however, in the ACA's view the possibility of improved short-term commercial outcomes should not be enough to force this on the game prematurely."

Cricket Australia and other administrations have weighed the concept for a number of years, hoping to tap into the possibility of broadcast dollars from bigger television audiences at home and abroad.

Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen is among those far from bowled over by the innovation.

"Day/night Test cricket -- what a joke! Hope all statistics start again then!" the South Africa-born player who was controversially dumped in the wake of England's Ashes debacle earlier this year, said on his Twitter page.

"Public don't watch cos there is too much cricket! And it's expensive! Play less & public will be more interested!" wrote the 104-Test veteran, whose crowd-pulling aggressive batting is now confined to Twenty20 leagues and county cricket. 


Image: The pink ball that was trialed by the Marylebone Cricket Club
Photographs: Getty Images
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New Zealand beat Windies in third Test for series win

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Trent Boult captured the final West Indies wicket in the third over with the second new ball to give New Zealand a tense 53-run victory in the deciding third Test in Barbados on Monday and a 2-1 series victory.

New Zealand won the first Test in Jamaica, while West Indies won the second in Trinidad.

New Zealand's only previous series win in the West Indies was when they took a 1-0 victory in the two-match series in 2002.

The victory with 13.4 overs remaining in the final day's play also completed the third successive series win for Brendon McCullum's side after they beat West Indies 2-0 and India 1-0 at home in the southern hemisphere summer.

Boult had Jerome Taylor trapped in front for 12 to bowl the hosts out for 254, chasing 308 to win.

Facing the prospect of intermittent rain, McCullum had declared overnight at 331 for seven, a lead of 307, with Kane Williamson unbeaten on 161.

The West Indies were in trouble almost from the start of their second innings as medium-fast bowler Trent Boult dismissed Kraigg Brathwaite (six) and Kirk Edwards (10) cheaply.

Tim Southee subsequently sent the dangerous Chris Gayle packing for 11 with the last ball of the 10th over, which left the West Indies reeling at 31 for three.

Gayle, who faced 33 balls in a subdued stay at the crease, was bowled when he played the ball on via an inside edge and his pad.

A New Zealand victory or a draw seemed the only two likely outcomes from that stage though two short rain delays and then stubborn resistance from the tail threatened to save the home team.

Debutant fast bowler Jason Holder followed up his 38 in the first innings with 52 in a 77-run partnership with Shane Shillingford (30 not out) before offspinner Mark Craig bowled Holder between his legs off a delivery that kept low.

Last batsman Taylor, who scored a Test century against New Zealand in 2008, and Shillingford then put on 22 for the final wicket before Boult struck.


Image: Trent Boult
Photographs: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

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