Saturday, December 1, 2018

India's rejection: Day-night cricket is give and take, says Eddings



Cricket Australia chairman Earl Eddings says it is unfortunate this week's Test opener in Adelaide is not a day-night event, for the Board of Control for Cricket in India had rejected a request for it to be a pink-ball clash.

The three previous Tests at the revamped venue had been under lights and attracted strong crowds and broadcast ratings, something new host networks Channel Seven and Fox Sports could miss out on as the final session will not be held in prime time. Australia had won all three games.  India has yet to play a Test under lights and felt it would be disadvantaged by not yet having done so, for it can take time to adjust to the pink-lacquered Kookaburra ball, whether that be when bowling or batting.  "Day-night Test cricket is a way of the future. You don't play it in all countries and at all venues. Certainly in Adelaide, you have seen how successful that has been," Eddings said.  "Unfortunately, we couldn't get it done this year but we are going to have one in Brisbane. If you have the right Test at the right spot, day-night Test cricket is fantastic. I am sure we will get it back there (Adelaide) next year."  Under current International Cricket Council rules, the visiting nation can reject the host nation's request when it comes to scheduling. However, that is set to change under the new Test championship program from next year.  India experimented with pink-ball cricket in its Duleep Trophy domestic championship in 2016 but has yet to warm to it at an international level.  "Like everything, it's all a negotiation, bilateral cricket - it's give and take and you move on with it," Eddings said.

The three previous Tests at the revamped venue had been under lights and attracted strong crowds and broadcast ratings, something new host networks Channel Seven and Fox Sports could miss out on as the final session will not be held in prime time. Australia had won all three games.

India has yet to play a Test under lights and felt it would be disadvantaged by not yet having done so, for it can take time to adjust to the pink-lacquered Kookaburra ball, whether that be when bowling or batting.

"Day-night Test cricket is a way of the future. You don't play it in all countries and at all venues. Certainly in Adelaide, you have seen how successful that has been," Eddings said.

"Unfortunately, we couldn't get it done this year but we are going to have one in Brisbane. If you have the right Test at the right spot, day-night Test cricket is fantastic. I am sure we will get it back there (Adelaide) next year."

Under current International Cricket Council rules, the visiting nation can reject the host nation's request when it comes to scheduling. However, that is set to change under the new Test championship program from next year.

India experimented with pink-ball cricket in its Duleep Trophy domestic championship in 2016 but has yet to warm to it at an international level.

"Like everything, it's all a negotiation, bilateral cricket - it's give and take and you move on with it," Eddings said.

While India didn't give on this occasion, Sri Lanka has agreed to play under lights in the Brisbane Test in February.

Regardless of the timing of matches, Eddings has urged his Test side to play hard but fair but doesn't expect Tim Paine's men to be quiet on the field of battle when the series opens on Thursday.

The players have devised their own cultural pact and, under new coach Justin Langer, are expected to have "elite honesty".

Just how the players should act verbally on the field continues to spark debate, with former skipper Michael Clarke, Simon Katich and Matthew Hayden the latest to voice their opinions.

"Just play good, hard cricket. I don't think people wants us to be quiet but they wants us to play with respect to the game, play hard but fair, and win well and lose better," Eddings said.

"The old adage is you don't say much when you win and say even less when you lose. I think we have a great team, they are fine young men, and I think they will do that. My advice to the guys is to go out and play your natural game and try as hard as you can. That's all Australians want to see."

Eddings said he had been proud of how the Australians fought and survived for a draw against Pakistan in the Dubai Test last month.

"It's tough over there, conditions are tough, it's a very different environment. I think we saw with that draw how much that lifted Australia," he said.

"Obviously, the next Test wasn't so great but you can certainly see when you play the game hard and fair and hold on, I think you can win those fans back quickly, just by being courageous."


Eddings has come to power after predecessor David Peever was forced to step aside having lost the support of key states NSW and Victoria. This followed the damning Longstaff report into the culture of the governing body, coming after the sandpaper scandal in South Africa when David Warner, Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft were suspended.


"Just play good, hard cricket. 

I don't think people wants us to be 

quiet but they wants us to play 

with respect to the game, play hard 

but fair, and win well and lose better"
Earl Eddings

Bancroft's suspension ends on December 29 while Smith and Warner, banned until March 29, have spent time in the nets with Langer over the past week although this was done under the auspices of the players still being able to train with their state teams through their first-class suspensions.


"They are doing everything right, all of three of them. I have been very impressed. They are all contrite, doing everything they can to come back and be in good shape," Eddings said.

"The bans were tough but they were fair and reasonable as we have explained to the ACA (Australian Cricketers Association) and they accepted that. I think all Australians want to see them come back into the game and do well. That transition is going to be important - we are doing that now."

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