NEW DELHI: It’s official now, day-night Tests will be a regular feature in India’s Test cricket calendar from the 2020-21 season.
On Sunday, the Indian cricket board (BCCI) apex council met and decided that India will be playing a day-night Test in Australia later this year followed by the hosting of one such game at home when England come to India for a five-Test series next February. India will be in Australia to play a four-Test series.
“A formal announcement will come soon but we have decided to play a day-night Test in Australia. We will also play one against England at home next February. Day-night Tests will be a regular feature from now on,” BCCI president Sourav Ganguly told TOI after the meeting.
India had been resisting playing with the pink ball until the Ganguly-led BCCI took the initiative to stage their maiden day-night Test against Bangladesh at Eden Gardens in November.
However, it is understood that the venue for India’s first overseas pink-ball Test is not finalized yet. Sources in the board said the match could be played in either Brisbane or Adelaide. “It will have to be seen if the team will be comfortable playing the opening Test of the series or is willing to break the rhythm in the middle of the series,” said a senior BCCI official. As for the day-night Test at home against England next year, it is learnt that the revamped Motera stadium in Ahmedabad is the frontrunner to host the match.
Lanka tour after a break post IPL
The BCCI also ensured that there is sufficient rest for the players post a long IPL before embarking on their next assignment. India will be touring Sri Lanka for three T20Is and three ODIs in late June. “The BCCI wanted that there was at least a month’s break after the IPL. That’s why the tour of Sri Lanka was pushed to the end of June,” said the BCCI official.
India to tour Zimbabwe in August
India will also travel to play three ODIs in Zimbabwe in August. India had scrapped a home series against Zimbabwe in January since the Zimbabwe Cricket was suspended by ICC over political interference. However, the BCCI has now decided to honour the future tours programme (FTP) since the suspension has been lifted by the world body.
ODIs still important
India captain Virat Kohli had played down the relevance of the 50-over format in a T20 World Cup year after losing the ODI series in New Zealand 3-0. What’s the thinking of the board? “That’s his (Kohli’s) opinion. But ODIs remain a very important format in cricket. We can’t dismiss it,” the official remarked.
SIVA IN SHORTLIST
A day after news came that Laxman Sivaramakrishnan‘s name had gone missing from the list of shortlisted candidates for the selector’s job, it emerged that the former India leg spinner is very much in the list of candidates to be interviewed. “There was never any confusion over Siva’s application. He is in the shortlist,” Ganguly told TOI. Ganguly hinted that the two new selectors-replacing incumbent chairman MSK Prasad and Gagan Khoda- would be appointed in the next 10 days. Ganguly had earlier said that the new selection panel will pick the squad for the three-ODI home series against South Africa which starts on March 12.
ICA GET RS 2 CRORE
The board also sanctioned Rs two crore for the newly-formed Indian Cricketers’ Association (ICA) to build their setup. “We expected Rs 5 crore to start with but BCCI sanctioned Rs 2 crore. They have some issues settling their finances at the moment. But this amount will be good enough to set up our office and operations,” ICA’s representative to BCCI, Anshuman Gaekwad said.
Source : timesofindia