ECB 'open-minded' about floodlit Test matches

Pink cricket ball
Pink balls, for day-night cricket, were first trialled at Lord's in 2008

England cricket managing director Hugh Morris has declared himself "open minded" about the prospect of playing floodlit Test matches.

The viability of playing day-night Tests, to boost crowds, is being explored by the game's governing body, the International Cricket Council.

And Morris told Radio 4's Today programme: "This may be a next step."

Former England batsman Geoffrey Boycott is an advocate. "You have to change or sadly [Tests] are going," he said.

Speaking on BBC Radio's Test Match Special programme on Monday, he added: "We don't market the game. We just believe that this has been Test cricket for 200 years but you have to change.

"If you're selling something to the public - and sadly, rightly or wrongly, we are selling it - you have to change to what the public want, what they can afford and when they can go."

While accepting that change was inevitable, Morris said a degree of caution was needed.

"I've got a pretty open mind on whether we play under lights as far as Test match cricket is concerned," he continued.

"The colour of the ball we would potentially use under lights would be important and trialling it in other forms of the game before we do it at international level would be important.

"We have to keep an open mind. There has been a lot of change in our game in recent years. This may be a next step but we'd need to make sure we'd got it right before it was played at international level."

Playing day-night Tests is not a new initiative. In December 2009, the then-ICC president David Morgan said he believed they would be introduced within two years.

One of the big issues is finding a coloured ball that is easy for the batsman, fielders and spectators to see under floodlights.

A pink ball has already been trialled in first-class cricket in Pakistan this year but the ICC have recommended that all nations test the ball in their four-day competitions to ensure it is up to standard.

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