As expected, the BCCI has rejected the offer of playing a day-night Test in Australia. The CoA was seeking some practice for the Indian players before they participated in a floodlit Test.
It is a shame that despite having trialed Duleep Trophy matches in 2016 and 2017 with the pink ball, only four of India’s Test regulars featured in those matches. If only the BCCI were so serious about the format, they should have either made the national side cricketers play those games or staged D/N Ranji Trophy matches too. But with India’s players busy all year round, perhaps they would not have made it to their Ranji teams either.
The superpower of world cricket and the most influential cricket body in the world are shunning D/N Tests much like they had refused to accept DRS, and that means Adelaide will see a conventional Test for the first time since 2014.
While we are all ready to embrace Ireland as the eleventh Test nation in men’s cricket – their women already played the longest format way back in 2000 – just a one-match series to begin with seems inadequate. Financial challenges for Cricket Ireland in conducting a five-day affair and hosting a side are understandable; so perhaps with the ICC’s assistance in the same, there could have been at least another Test scheduled to mark a better beginning.
Too many of such one-Test tours involving relatively lower-ranked nations have occurred recently – the saddest of those was Bangladesh playing one in India in 2017 after waiting for 17 long years, while Afghanistan’s sole five-day game there this June is another such example.
We require the ICC’s intervention again in framing the FTP so that newer Test-playing countries are provided better opportunities; and powerful boards like Cricket Australia don’t cancel visits by them citing commercial losses, making the smart excuse of the Test Championship starting next year, where inevitably, all teams will certainly end up facing the others at least a number of times.