Today sees another important step in the development of floodlit cricket with the first-ever day/night Test Match taking place in England.
Edgbaston is the venue for England’s opening Investec Test Match against West Indies, which becomes only the fifth Test globally to be played under day/night conditions and with a pink ball.
The MCC World Cricket committee first proposed day/night Tests at its meeting at Lord's in May 2008. In February 2010, it was announced that the MCC v Champion County match in Abu Dhabi later that year would become the first trial of pink ball cricket under floodlights, with the long-term aim of introducing day/night Tests. All of MCC's matches on that tour were played with pink balls.
The MCC World Cricket committee released a statement in July 2010 confirming that the trial had been successful and stating its belief that the time was right to play day/night Test cricket. The committee continued its advocacy ahead of the first Test Match under lights, which was played at Adelaide in November 2015 between Australia and New Zealand.
Since then, there have been three further floodlit Test matches: Pakistan’s clash with West Indies in Dubai last October, followed by two in successive months for Australia – against South Africa and Pakistan in Adelaide and Brisbane respectively.
The inaugural floodlit Test Match in England is another milestone in its global development
At present, it is anticipated that England will play in three of the next four scheduled floodlit Tests: Edgbaston, followed by the Ashes match at Adelaide in December and a possible first pink ball Test in New Zealand next March at Eden Park.
The first Specsavers County Championship matches under the floodlights took place back in June, with all eighteen counties, including their England Test players, gaining experience of the different playing conditions.
MCC Head of Cricket John Stephenson said, “I am delighted that the work and investment MCC has put into day/night cricket over the last decade is bearing fruit, both nationally and internationally.
"The inaugural floodlit Test Match in England is another milestone in its global development and I look forward to seeing how the pink ball – as well as the players – perform.”