Kolkata: India and Bangladesh will face each other in the Day-night Test from today at Eden Gardens in Kolkata. But what is fascinating is that the match is India’s first-ever Pink ball Test.
Interestingly, both India and Bangladesh players don’t have a lot of competitive pink-ball experience. In fact, captain Virat Kohli has not played a competitive Pink ball match yet.
After long resisting the latest innovation in Test cricket, India will join the party that is aimed at increasing crowds and TV audiences for the longest format of the game. Day-night Tests were successfully introduced in 2015 but it took India a new BCCI regime under former captain Sourav Ganguly to take the pink ball plunge.
The likes of Mayank Agarwal and Cheteshwar Pujara along with Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja and others have played Pink ball matches in Duleep Trophy but it will be the 1st time they will play with the SG Pink ball.
Both India and Bangladesh have made the best use of the time that was available in the lead-up to the Pink ball Test. The players from the 2 teams started training with the Pink balls as early as the Indore Test which India won by an innings and 130 runs.
The Pink ball Test is an exciting prospect but the unknowns surrounding the Pink ball are going to add spice to what looks like a mismatch on paper.
The Pink ball’s tendency to do a lot more in the air under the lights has been a challenge for batsmen in Day-night Tests so far. The visibility (or the lack of it) in the twilight session has also been a slight cause of concern in the past.
Notably, the Pink ball Test will start earlier (1 PM IST) than elsewhere in the world to make sure there is very little influence of the dew in Kolkata.
As far as the ICC World Test Championship is concerned, India sit at the top of the table with 300 points from 6 wins.
India: Virat Kohli (capt), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Rishabh Pant, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Hanuma Vihari, Kuldeep Yadav and Shubman Gill.
Bangladesh: Mominul Haque (capt), Liton Das (wk), Mehidy Hasan, Nayeem Hasan, Al-Amin Hossain, Ebadot Hossain, Mossadek Hossain, Shadman Islam, Taijul Islam, Abu Jayed, Imrul Kayes, Mahmudullah, Mohammad Mithun, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mustafizur Rahman.