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Bangladesh tour of India 2019

All you need to know about the pink ball ahead of the Day Night Test match

A lot is unknown about the pink SG ball that will be used for India’s first-ever Day-Night Test match against Bangladesh at the Eden Gardens from November 22. While it loses its colour too soon, gets scuffed easily and appears orange at twilight, there is no doubt that it will present a stiffer challenge to the batters than the normal red-ball. 


There will be a lot more swing on offer with the pink ball, due to the layers of coating and paint that are applied on the ball. As a result, the pink ball will get old only after 25 overs, rather than the 10-15 overs that it takes for the red ball to get old. However, once the pink ball loses its shine, the bowlers will have to resort to seam movement as the ball will hardly swing. This will allow the spinners to get into the game as well. With a pronounced black seam, the slow bowlers can get more revolutions after gripping. 


The dew, though, might pose a problem. The ball will get slippery and gripping the pink ball will get tougher as the evening progresses. It gets dark in Kolkata by 4 pm at this time of the year, so that means at least 3 hours of the game will be played with heavy dew on the ground. The ball might get wet, and as a result, the pink ball might lose its colour. If this happens, the visibility of the ball will get impacted as well. To counter the effects of dew, the groundsmen are leaving more grass than usual on the track to help the ball retain its colour. Anti-dew sprays have been used as well around Edens.

The seam and the hardness of the pink ball have been retained for this game against Bangladesh, which indicates that the pink ball will remain hard for at least 70 overs, if not 80 overs, after which the balls will be changed. 

With more swing on offer, India’s already threatening seam attack will fancy their chances bowling with the pink ball, though the batters might have a few issues upfront in their innings. Tackling the twilight period will be the key, as the colour of the ball changes to orange in this phase, but all said and done, the upcoming match promises to be an enthralling affair – both for the cricketers and the fans.

This postgraduate in English Literature from Kolkata has taken on the tough task of limiting the mystic world of cricket to a few hundred words. A firm believer that Kohli is a wizard with the willow, she spends her time awaiting the next Indian spring triumph.


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