Sourav Ganguly gets Bangladesh's approval to play India's first day-night Test in Kolkata
Kolkata: BCCI President Sourav Ganguly said the historic decision to organise India's first-ever day-night Test is based on "common sense" as it is the only way to revive falling crowd interest in the traditional format. India's maiden day-night Test against Bangladesh, the second game of a two-match series, will be held at Eden Gardens here from November 22 to 26 and will be a first for the visiting side as well.
Ganguly said he is happy that India skipper Virat Kohli as well as the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) have agreed on a historic first at such a short notice. "It's just my job, that's what I'm here for... because I've played this game for so long. It's great. I think common sense is important. And I think it's a great move for Test cricket and hopefully it will bring crowds back to the ground," Ganguly told PTI in an interview just after the landmark development.
It's less than a week in office as BCCI chief and Ganguly had created something that will be his legacy even if his term ends in the next 10 months. "Test cricket needs this push. Secretary Jay (Shah) and me and our new team were pretty hell bent on it. Thanks to Virat (Kohli) also, he agreed straightaway. And even more to Bangladesh Cricket Board that they agreed at such a short notice. It's a good way forward," Ganguly said.
It wasn't an easy job but Ganguly managed to convince BCB mandarins after a lot of back channel talks. "Things change like this. I think it's a great start for Test cricket in the subcontinent. Our intentions have been good. It's going to be no problem at all. Everything will be fine don't worry," the former captain said in an assured tone.
In the Duleep Trophy games that were held in the preceding years (2016, 2017 and 2018), when Ganguly was the technical committee chairman, dew was one issue that became problematic for the spinners. "We will make sure there's no dew. After all day-night one-dayers are played here. There's this dew treatment spray and all. Nothing will happen," Ganguly said.
anguly also informed that BCCI will persist with SG Test pink balls instead of Dukes or Kookaburra. "Hopefully SG... because the first match will be with SG so the second Test will also have to be with SG." Asked why Kookaburra balls can't be used, Ganguly said that two different balls (different companies) can't be used in the same series.
"No, it can't be because the series has to be played with same ball. It can't be two different balls in the same series." With no Shakib Al Hasan, banned for two years (one year suspended sentence) for breaching ICC Anti-Corruption code, Bangladesh might find it problematic to deal with pink ball under lights. "I don't think it's going to be a problem. They have such quality players they would adjust easily," Ganguly sounded confident that the match wont lose its competitive flavour without Shakib.
Was there a feeling of deja vu when Bangladesh agreed just like CAB hosted the Indo-Pak game in World T20 after being shifted from Dharmasala at short notice in 2016, he replied: "This was scheduled. We just made it a day/night unlike that game." "We have not decided anything yet because we were not confirmed whether it's going to be a day/night or day. Once this is confirmed we will take it from there," he concluded.
Want to give it a carnival feel, says Avishek Dalmiya
Kolkata: Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) secretary Avishek Dalmiya said they will leave no stone unturned to make India's first-ever day-night Test a success. "In one word, we are delighted. It's also a great news for all the cricket lovers. Eden has been privy to a lot of history. It would be another feather in its cap," Dalmiya said. "CAB would leave no stone unturned to ensure that it is a successful event. The presence of dignitaries and distinguished guests, cultural shows and felicitation of former players would add to the grandeur of the event," Dalmiya added.
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