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BCCI in talks with British ball manufacturers 'Dukes' for supply of pink balls

India to use all three pink balls from Dukes, Kookaburra and SG during the experimental phase.

Pink Dukes balls
Dukes is likely to supply India pink balls for the experimental phase

Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is in talks with the British ball manufacturers Dukes for the supply of pink balls. The balls received from them will be tested along with other brands before making the final call on which of them will be used during the proposed day-night Test matches that are to be hosted by India later this year.

Indian cricket generally uses the SG ball for their home matches. ‘Dukes’ are used in West Indies and England, while rest of the Test playing nations use the Kookaburra balls.

The only day-night match that was played between Australia and New Zealand last year used a pink Kookaburra ball. However, it has been learnt that the chairman of BCCI’s technical committee, Sourav Ganguly has suggested that all options should be explored during the experimental phase. He pointed out the better and thicker seam nature of a Dukes and asked for its trials as it might be helpful for Indian bowlers.

“Sourav has made an observation about pink kookaburra balls. Sourav feels that the kookaburra seam could be a problem in Indian conditions. He suggested that we should also check out with Duke Company if they can manufacture pink balls with a pronounced seam. We are expecting a consignment from Dukes,” BCCI secretary Ajay Shirke told PTI during an interaction. 

"We are still deliberating on a lot of issues. The conditions, the ball used and its longevity. Also whether it is fair to have only one Test with pink ball and other two with red ball. Whether it will be fair on the two teams," he added.

Also read: India vs Zimbabwe 2016: Jasprit Bumrah focussed on bowling in the right areas 

There is a huge possibility that the BCCI will use all three pink balls from Dukes, Kookaburra and SG during the upcoming season of Duleep Trophy. The inter-zonal domestic first-class tournament will feature senior members of Indian Test team and a feedback will be taken from them regarding the change in the ball and the playing conditions.

“Pink Dukes has been used during the last edition of Karnataka Premier League T20 tournament. But since it was T20, BCCI top brass feels that it won’t be possible to use its feedback as a data for longer version of the game. It is important for the administrators to get assurance from manufacturers that a standard pink ball would have the ability to last 100 overs in sub-continental conditions,” said the BCCI office bearer.

The first day-night Test match that was played at the Adelaide Oval between New Zealand and Australia last year received an overwhelmingly positive response. Since then the response from cricket boards across the world has been encouraging and in favour of the modified version of Test cricket.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) recently agreed to play a pink ball game during their tour of Australia later this year, while Australia will also host a day-night Test match against Pakistan in December.

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