The West Indies Cricket Board's decision to experiment with pink balls in the upcoming Regional Four Day competition has met with apprehension from Dudnath Ramkessoon, the chairman of the Trinidad and Tobago senior cricket selection panel. He has urged the WICB to reconsider the move, for the tests conduced so far on the pink balls appear to have yielded unfavourable results.
"We have looked at the results of some tests done on the pink balls and what I can say is that they have not come off too good," Ramkessoon told CMC. "From the tests they have done in England on the balls, they have been unable to withstand the pressure. What they are saying is that the balls are not up to standard, as they are losing their colour after around nine to 12 overs. The dye used on these balls is not holding up well at all."
Ramkessoon suggested the experiment be delayed until the doubts over the quality of the balls being used were erased. "Our information is that they have since done some more extensive tests on the ball and are trying to improve it. However, I don't think that using it at this point in time is a wise idea," he said. "In Australia, Kookaburra has developed a new white ball that can be used for night matches and they are very happy with the results. What they are saying is that the ball is standing up to the rigours of cricket and this in my opinion, this may be the way to go."
The WICB decided to introduce radical innovations to the first-class game, such as day-night fixtures and the use of pink balls, in an attempt to boost spectator interest. Another feature is the hosting of an entire round in one territory to ease the logistical challenges in travelling arrangements.
The first round will begin in Jamaica from January 8-11 while the final round will be played at Windwards between February 26 and March 1.