Brendon McCullum is apprehensive about the prospect of a Day/Night test against Australia in late October. His apprehensively apprehensive view of this shows a lot of apprehension.
When a sports person adopts a new word and thrashes it to bits you know there’s been a meeting.
It seems that the third test in Australia later in the year will be day / night match, with the introduction of a pink ball. However the New Zealand players have made their apprehension discomfort with this very clear. They will play in it, but under some pretty public sufferance.
What makes this strange is that this is at the same team as the team is being lauded for its positive brand.
The pink ball has been trialled for seven years, and for people to conjecture that it will go out of shape more easily than the red ball have quickly forgotten what happened in the Sri Lankan series last summer.
Some reticence seems to be around why New Zealand should be involved in the first test like this; like that is a bad thing. If Australia, dirty Australia, part of The Big Three Australia is prepared to be first up to try this out, then why can’t we do the same?
When you think about it, less than a third of this match will be played under lights anyway. It is unlikely it will finish after 10pm Eastern Standard time, and it is scheduled to be played less than a month before the longest day.
One of the features of international cricket is the variability of the conditions, and teams’ ability to deal with it. When you play in England you look up not down when deciding what to do after the toss. The first hour there is often drastically different from the rest of the day.
When teams come to the Basin Reserve the most important player is the seamer who can bowl long spells into the wind.
Then there are the pitches of rolled mud in Bangladesh, and playing in 40 degrees in Galle.
And at Durban you check out the tide timetable to work out what the pitch is going to do.
This is all just part of it; you deal with what is in front of you. The Adelaide Oval is known for being a little too batting friendly, so it the pink ball swings a bit more then that is no bad thing.
It is a natural progression in the continuing evolving of sports consumption. People do work during the week, and this provides an opportunity for people to attend, and watch on TV, that currently does not exist. The players should also remember that it is TV deals that pay the wages.
So please McCullum and co; let’s embrace this and approach it poitively. Dare to dream.