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Pink balls & floodlights

Exclusive photos from Abu Dhabi where MCC prepare to face Durham in the curtain-raiser to the English season - under floodlights in the Middle East.

Ahead of the historic match at the Zayed International Cricket Stadium both teams had a chance to practice with the pink ball ahead of the match.

For many it would be their first sight of the new balls, especially under floodlights so the net sessions had an extra added interest.

Bowlers and batsmen alike were sizing up the new ball - as was MCC's wicket-keeper, Essex's James Foster.

First impressions were good but the rigours of a four day match against the impressive County Champions Durham will bring new pressures and focus on both ball and players.

MCC v Durham - Live

You can follow the match live with We'll have live, ball-by-ball commentary, courtesy of BBC Newcastle, available via this website.

There will also be session-by-session updates as the match unfolds. Plus we'll have more great photos from the stadium of the players (and the pink ball) in action.

Why not follow us on Twitter - we'll have all the breaking news from the match as well as the inside story from events off the pitch.

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