Pink ball is not the way to save Test cricket feels Sachin Tendulkar – In a world of fast dying love for test matches, the question of ‘How to get in the crowds for Test matches’ has been discussed by India’s cricketing greats, past and present. Many answers like – Day-Night format, pink ball, better wickets came to fore but none satisfying enough. On the eve of India’s 500th Test to be played in Kanpur from Thursday (September 22), this question will again beg the answer.
Sachin Tendulkar joined a stellar panel of former captains that included Kapil Dev, Dilip Vengsarkar, Krishnamachari Srikanth, Ravi Shastri and Sourav Ganguly, that gathered here in Kanpur, to celebrate and mark this historic event. On the question of the pink ball, he said “Personally, I do not like the idea of playing with a pink ball. A lot of adjustments are being made and I feel the pink ball isn’t a good idea,” . Current captain Virat Kohli was a member of the panel too. Sunil Gavaskar and Mohammad Azharuddin were also in the audience.
Tendulkar reasoned why he is averse to the idea of playing with the pink-ball as he was unsure how the dew responded to the ball and since every pitch in the world reacts differently nothing is certain. Alternatively, he said, having wickets that favor bowlers equally is better.
Shastri concurred with Sachin, stating: “I agree with every bit of what Sachin said. Dew is a major factor. The way is to have a better balance between batting and bowling.”
“Test matches will be interesting and will draw the crowds if we ensure better wickets. In England and Australia, Terst cricket still sees a full house. You have to make good quality wickets,” pointed out Dilip Vengsarkar.
“Good wicket, goodmarketing, competitive cricket, all of these need to be done,” felt ICC CEO David Richardson.
Kapil Dev chip-ed in by saying, “As cricketers, we often forget where we are taking the game. But, today’s generation knows how to ensure that the crowds come in. In those days, we never thought this way. However, these youngsters will have to work extra hard to ensure that people watch Test cricket in large numbers,”
Team India captain Virat Kohli, said “Test remained the most important format of the game still.” “We will keep Test cricket where it belongs. We will try our best to take the legacy forward.” chimed Kohli.