Eden Gardens, get ready for day-night Test! Hosts likely to face Bangladesh
The iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata may have another distinction added to its long list of landmark events. If things go well, this venue may become the host to the first-ever day-night Test played in India. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is keen on the idea and have asked Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) for their approval.
The Bangladesh cricket team start their tour of India on the 3rd November with the first T20I in a series of three games, to be followed by two Test matches. The second and final Test will be played at the Eden Gardens from 22nd November.
Speaking to the media, BCB's Cricket Operations Chairman Akram Khan revealed the nature of communication from BCCI on this issue.
"They (BCCI) have proposed (that a day-night Test be held in Kolkata) and we will let them know after thinking a while. We have received the letter two or three days (ago) and we will take a decision in this regard but we have not discussed it. We will let them know about our decision within one or two days," Khan said.
It was in 2015 that the first-ever day-night Test was held – at Adelaide between Australia and New Zealand. Since then, Australians have been playing a day-night Test every season. In 2016, they played South Africa at the same venue while in 2017, they faced Pakistan at Brisbane. Later that year, they hosted the first-ever day-night Ashes Test at the Adelaide Oval. Earlier this year, Sri Lanka faced the hosts in the day-nighter at Brisbane.
Apart from Australia, Pakistan have also hosted two day-night Tests, against West Indies and Sri Lanka in UAE. West Indies themselves played a home day-night Test against Sri Lankans in 2018. New Zealand saw day-night Test cricket debut in their country when they took on England at the Eden Park in Auckland in early 2018.
South Africa's only day-night Test came against Zimbabwe in 2017 which was also the first-ever 4-day Test. England too have hosted a day-night game of the longest format, against West Indies in 2017 at Birmingham.
First-class cricket has been played in India under lights with pink balls. Considering the weather and the office timings, a day-night Test would be ideal for this country. It would allow people to come to watch the game after office and would also give the players some respite from excessive heat, which is the case towards the latter half of the season. Let's see whether BCB assent to this proposal.