Wed, Oct 31, 2012 - Page 19 News List

Aussies want to start playing day/night Tests soon

AFP, SYDNEY

Cricket Australia yesterday said it wanted to start playing day/night Tests as soon as practical after the International Cricket Council (ICC) gave its seal of approval to the concept.

The ICC late on Monday announced that Tests can finally take place under lights, with teams deciding on the hours of play and the brand, type and color of the ball to be used.

Cricket Australia (CA) chief executive James Sutherland has long argued that the game needs to recognize that fans have a better chance of watching Test cricket if it is played at night.

“Test cricket is by definition played on at least three week days, times when most people are at work or school, and this limits the ability of fans to attend or watch on TV,” he said in a statement.

He said when a Test was played in Perth on Australia’s west coast, which is three hours behind the cities of Sydney and Melbourne, the TV audience was much higher because fans on the east coast were home from work.

“CA has a formal strategic plan that demands that Australian cricket puts fans first and we will now add day/night Tests to the agenda when we talk to other Test nations about their future tours Down Under,” he said.

However, Sutherland added that he did not want to create expectations that day/night Tests were imminent.

“Finding a Test ball that is as easily visible in the day as it is at night is still a technical work in progress that the ICC is now leading and it has not yet been possible to predict when such a ball might be available,” he said.

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