An MCC representative will be in India this week to oversee a number of Indian Premier League teams testing the pink cricket ball.
Three of the IPL franchises - Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils - will this week conduct practice sessions with a variety of pink cricket balls.
Fraser Stewart, MCC’s Laws and Universities Manager, will supervise proceedings and collate feedback from some of the world’s best players, including Anil Kumble, Rahul Dravid and Virender Sehwag.
Over the course of the sessions, around 150 pink cricket balls - manufactured by Dukes, Kookaburra and SG - will be tested in the nets for their performance, durability and clarity.
These three suppliers currently provide the red balls for Test match cricket. The pink cricket balls being tested at IPL training will vary in age from new to 15 overs old.
Stewart said: "The Indian Premier League has embraced the concept of trialling the pink cricket ball and kindly agreed to test them in their practice sessions for MCC.
"The feedback we’ll get from these elite players will be invaluable to us in our research and potentially extremely important for the future of Test match cricket, as pink balls could be the factor required to play day/night Tests."
Illegal bowling actions
It has been a busy few weeks for MCC’s research and development arm. In addition to its comprehensive experiments on the pink ball - which will see its use in an MCC four day, day/night match in Abu Dhabi next month - the Guardian of the Laws and Spirit of Cricket has recently conducted testing on illegal bowling actions in its Indoor School at Lord’s.
Working in conjunction with its scientific research partner, Imperial College London, fifteen bowlers were each fitted with 26 reflective markers to ascertain the angle of the arm during delivery.
The long-term aim of this project is to find a definitive process for testing bowlers with suspect actions.