Traditional red cricket ball could be replaced with a pink one

November 14th, 2007 - 10:37 am ICT by admin  

A pink revolution is on the cards. The traditional red ball and even the white one presently used in one-day internationals, could be replaced with a pink, to be precise, and fluorescent pink one.

According to The Times, scientists at the Imperial College in London will be working during the winter on developing this new projectile, which will be used in university and second XI matches at the start of next season and, depending on whether it retains its colour, in county cricket the next summer. The aim is then to use it in one-day internationals.

John Stephenson, MCC’s head of cricket and a former opening batsman, with Essex, Hampshire and, for one Test, England, was quoted as saying that, “Paint tends to flake off white balls and we have asked Kookaburra to produce a batch of pink ones because these show up so much better.”

“The challenge is to produce a ball which retains its colour - I doubt it will be any more expensive to produce or buy. I have asked Mike Gatting, the ECB’s managing director of cricket partnerships, to use them in county second XI one-day matches, but we shall start by trying them in fixtures such as MCC v Europe and in the university matches we sponsor,” he added.

The two former England batsmen met to discuss this at Lord’s last week.

“My aim would be to use the pink ball in Twenty20 cricket in 2009 and thereafter in one-day international cricket, but this will be dependent on trials and what the ECB thinks,” Stephenson said.

Kookaburra, the ball manufacturer, has developed a batch of pink balls in Australia, which will be used in women’s cricket this winter. The properties are the same as in traditional balls, but its initial tests have shown that they have deteriorated too quickly for its liking.

“We must always push the game forward and ensure we have the right equipment,” Gatting said.

“We are trying to make cricket a better game for the players and television and have got past looking at it from a traditionalist’s view,” he added.

MCC’s cricket committee, which met last week, expressed its enthusiasm for pink balls, which scientists are testing to see if they will show up better on television than orange balls, which left a comet trail in the dark.

White balls were first used in the sport when Kerry Packer introduced floodlights at the Sydney Cricket Ground during the second year of World Series Cricket in 1978-79

Experiments with orange balls began in the Refuge Assurance Cup in domestic cricket in England in 1989, but television companies found that the balls did not show up properly in day-night matches

A blue ball was once designed for women’s cricket, but was discontinued. (ANI)

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