Cricket

Day-night Test cricket does not get universal backing

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Australia and New Zealand's players offered mixed reviews of day-night Test cricket after they shared a slice of history on the opening day of the ground-breaking match in Adelaide.

Australia seamer Peter Siddle declared the occasion a "great day" for cricket after almost 50,000 fans flocked to the Adelaide Oval - the most for a Test at the venue since England's Bodyline series in 1932-33.

Concerns were, however, raised about the behaviour of the pink ball, unveiled for the first time at Test level,which came in for much criticism before the match.

Twelve wickets fell in total - and five of those in the evening session - as the pink Kookaburra ball swung more appreciably after the lights came on, albeit without ever compromising the contest between bat and ball.

New Zealand were bowled out for 202, after they perhaps had the best of the conditions following Brendon McCullum winning the toss, before Australia reached 54 for two in 22 overs under the lights.

Siddle, who took his 200th Test wicket on his return to Australia's side, said: "It (the pink ball) was slightly different to the red ball. You didn't get much swing early on, but there was a bit of seam movement throughout the day, so a lot of comparisons with how it is with the white ball. But cricket in general, it was supported well here, and I'm sure it would have been on TV and all over the world.

"I think for cricket it's definitely been a great day."

New Zealand seamer Trent Boult reserved his judgement - the Black Caps are set to play a day-night Test of their own against Bangladesh next winter - adding: "We need to see a bit more of it to be honest.

"It was a great buzz out there, everyone could see that and it's amazing to be playing Test cricket in front of 50,000-odd people. We've got to see how this one goes and pans out, but it definitely is exciting for Test match cricket.

"I've had a couple of hit-outs with it during the day and at night, and the findings are it does tend to change a lot under lights and in the last session it definitely swung around a little bit with the new ball and there was still a shade of it with it 22 overs old now.

"It is a different game under lights and we've got to come back tomorrow and hope to put a bit more pressure on them."

The attendance for the opening day was 47,441 - just a few thousand short of the total that went to the first four days of the series opener in Brisbane - and the Adelaide Oval swelled in the final session as the after-work fans made use of ?9.50 'twilight tickets'.

"It was exciting for everyone. The Adelaide Test match has always been one of my favourites and to play it with a crowd like that definitely surprised a few boys, Siddle said.

"We haven't spoken too much about it yet, in time through this Test match there may be a bit more spoken about it, maybe tomorrow morning and all that.

"But it was a great day, wasn't it? I think everyone here that came and witnessed what went on will be very impressed just with the whole experience."

Australia were dealt a blow after play when it was confirmed that Mitchell Starc would not bowl again in the match after he was forced from the field having taken three for 24.

Cricket Australia revealed scans after play had picked up an " early stage stress fracture in the third metatarsal on his right foot" which could rule him out of Australia's upcoming Test series against West Indies.

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