India must embrace day-night Tests and shed its apprehensions about the pink ball matches, seasoned spinner Harbhajan Singh suggested on Thursday. India have refused to play the Adelaide Test against Australia later this year under lights, inviting criticism from a number of players, including Mark Waugh and Ian Chappell.
“I don’t know why they don’t want to play day-night Test matches. It’s an interesting format and we should try it. I am all for it,” said Harbhajan. “Tell me, what’s the apprehension of playing with pink ball? If you play, you can adjust. It may not be as difficult as it seems,” he added.
The CoA has backed the Indian team’s demands of not playing pink ball cricket for next 18 months. “I believe every team wants to win the series and that’s why we want to give our team the best possible chance,” said CoA chief Vinod Rai.
When told that Indian batsmen could have been in trouble under lights facing Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc, Harbhajan said, “So what if you get out? We have fast bowlers to trouble them. And what makes us think our batsmen can’t take up the challenge of facing Aussie pacers. It’s a challenge and what’s the harm in taking up the challenge. When we were new to Test cricket, we had only learnt how to bowl with SG Test and then slowly learnt to bowl with kookaburra and dukes.”
Harbhajan then spoke about various challenges. “Don’t you accept the challenge of playing England in overcast conditions in their country? Isn’t that a challenge? If we could take up that challenge why not pink ball cricket,” he questioned. “Life is a learning process and there is no harm if we could adapt to a new format.”
However, one of India’s greatest spinners doesn’t think that Day-Night cricket can save Test cricket. “Had it been so, it would have been introduced much earlier. But no harm playing pink ball tests from time to time,” said Harbhajan. He also suggested that India should host pink ball matches.
When reminded of the dew factor in India during winter months which causes serious impediments, he said, “Then don’t play pink ball Test in October-November, if you feel dew is a factor. Play at some other time when the dew factor can be negated but try out a new thing.”