Another day-night round has been added in this summer's Sheffield Shield season as Cricket Australia continues to press ahead with the pink-ball concept. The inaugural day-night Test between Australia and New Zealand at Adelaide Oval last month drew big crowds and a huge television audience, and Pakistan may also play day-night Test cricket in Australia next season.
With the likelihood of further day-night Tests being scheduled in the near future, Cricket Australia has decided to turn the seventh round of this season's Shield campaign into a day-night round. The matches, starting on February 14, will be played at Adelaide Oval and the Gabba, both of which could be in the running to host future day-night Tests, and the WACA.
"The public's response to the first day-night Test was overwhelmingly positive and we've now had some time to evaluate feedback from everyone involved in the match," Cricket Australia's head of cricket operations Sean Cary said. "As we look ahead to future international seasons and the prospect of playing more Test cricket under lights, we want to give our players more opportunities to play with the pink ball.
"These matches will be used as part of our work to keep refining the ball in close consultation with Kookaburra."
Although Cricket Australia was pleased with the outcome of the day-night Test against New Zealand - albeit the match lasted only three days - the players involved have expressed their belief that further work is needed on the pink ball. A player survey has revealed that the players believed the pink ball swung more than the red ball, especially at night, and was hard to see at dusk.