Indian Cricket Team head coach Ravi Shastri has surprised the Indian Cricket Board (BCCI) members by taking u-turn over the Day-Night Test, as he has now made it clear that the Men in Blue needs 12 to 18 months to get ready for the pink-ball cricket despite giving node for it 3-month back.
Earlier, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had decided to host a day-night Test against the West Indies this year after discussing with Shastri, but now the Committee of Administrators (CoA) has informed the board that Virat Kohli and his team are not ready for it at the moment.
Shastri had written in his letter to acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary in regards to playing day-night Test matches, “As far as day-night cricket goes it can be tried out as an experiment with a game starting at 12 and where the dew will play. Again, against a team like the West Indies, it has to be played in a Tier-II city without a doubt. To get in the crowds, it doesn't matter if it's a day game or day-night game. What's important is a Tier-II city.”
Speaking to CricketNext, a senior BCCI official said, “It is curious to see that the Indian coach was ready to experiment with day-night cricket with the pink ball in India about three months back but now the same decision-making process makes him say that 12 to 18 months of practice would be required for the team. There is no indication as to what the practice would be and what would be the logistics and time management surrounding that. One has to play pink – ball cricket to practice.”
An official, who was part of the technical committee meeting said, “The current system of the decision-making process within the board is what I would describe as a ‘hit and try’ method of taking decisions. It is to be expected with the CoA’s aversion to the BCCI’s committees, and it appears that they perceive the committees as entities that get in their way of taking decisions. They would be spot-on in terms of the day to day management that they are required to supervise. However, policy decisions are not in their domain and the scenario is that those required to execute the policies are presently taking policy decisions which in a manner of speaking is itself a big conflict of interest.”
The official signed off by saying, “The decision by Kohli of dropping a Test match to play county cricket for practice for the England series is also a surprising decision. If this particular plan was known earlier, the BCCI may not have scheduled the Afghanistan Test as it is not just another Test with a new Test team but in fact is going to be a historic and emotional event from many viewpoints and the visiting team deserves every ounce of respect that the hosts can give them. I can understand the captain wanting to prepare well for the next series but the captaincy of India comes with responsibilities. However, I do hope he is able to fly back to India to play the Test and then join Surrey after the Test because ultimately it does appear that it is his wishes that are being catered to by the COA and the CEO, and the processes of decision making appear to be organized around that.”