Day-night Test: Smith & McCullum excited at 'creating history'

Australia wicketkeeper Peter Nevill practising with the new pink ball in training at the Adelaide Oval
Australia wicketkeeper Peter Nevill practising with the new pink ball in training at the Adelaide Oval
Australia v New Zealand, third Test
Venue: Adelaide Oval Date: 27 November - 1 December Time: 03:30 GMT
Coverage: Live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra

Cricket's first day-night Test using a pink ball is an "exciting concept", says Australia captain Steve Smith.

Australia and New Zealand play under floodlights at the Adelaide Oval in a bid to boost attendances.

"I can't wait to get out and give it a crack," said 26-year-old Smith. "We are creating history."

New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum echoed Smith's enthusiasm as he said day-night Tests could be "outstanding for the game moving forward".

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The match will be the third and final Test of the series between the two countries, with Australia leading 1-0.

"I'm sure a lot of people are going to be watching around the world and I think that is really exciting for world cricket," added Smith.

"The crowds have rolled in. The first two Tests were a little bit disappointing with the crowds but there are some big numbers expected for at least the first three days here."

Hours of play graphic

How different is a day/night Test?

A pink ball, which has been designed to be visible in natural light and under floodlights, will be used but all other playing conditions remain unaltered for the match.

"I think people are voting with their feet," said McCullum, with a crowd of 50,000 expected for the first day.

"They are encouraged by what the pink ball test match has to offer.

"And for us to play in front of 40,000-odd people in a Test match is pretty amazing, so we're really, really excited about it.

"Hopefully it goes off brilliantly and there's no challenges, no problems.

"If we have that final session on the fifth day under lights, and a Test match result is in the balance, then I think that it could be anything for Test cricket."

'I know it will be under the microscope'

John Stephenson, head of cricket at the Marylebone Cricket Club, which is the guardian of the laws of the game, hopes the day-night format can expand to other countries on the back of this match.

"My hope is first and foremost that more people come to watch. I don't think it should be judged solely on this Test match," he said.

"What I'd like to see is other Test nations look to embrace it.

"I don't think broadcasters really want Test cricket played to empty stadia."

Phillip Hughes tribute

Phillip Hughes played 26 Test matches for Australia
Phillip Hughes played 26 Test matches for Australia

The opening day of the Test will mark a year to the day that Australia batsman Phillip Hughes passed away after being struck by a bouncer during a domestic match.

A tribute to Hughes will be played on the big screen during the first break at the Adelaide Oval.

"A year on we still have Hughesie in the back of our minds every time we walk out on to the field," said Smith.

"It's a tough time for his family and friends and we respect that. Hopefully, we can have a good week for Phillip."

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