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Day-night Ashes Test still on agenda

AAP logoAAP 25/11/2016 Rob Forsaith

Cricket Australia remains keen to host a day-night Ashes Test, with chief executive James Sutherland opining it will bring more eyeballs to the sport's most storied rivalry.

England are touring Australia in 2017/18, with CA mulling whether there will be one or possibly even two pink-ball games in the five-Test series.

Opposing skippers Steve Smith and Alastair Cook both suggested earlier this year it was an unnecessary and unwanted change, noting crowds will be huge regardless of when and where the matches are.

Sutherland agrees attendance won't be an issue but feels there are other arguments for changing a showpiece series steeped in tradition.

"I like the idea (of there being a day-night Ashes Test in Adelaide). It's a continued progression, it's good for the game" Sutherland told ABC Radio.

"We'll get great crowds whether it's a day game or a day-night game, but that additional access ... it obviously changes the time of the match to allow more people to watch it around this country.

"But also it actually helps in other parts of the world as well.

"That's really important, growing the game and making it accessible as possible to cricket fans around the world."

Sutherland was unwilling to disclose whether the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) shared his enthusiasm, saying only "we've had conversations".

But he did take heart from the fact Cook's side would play a day-night Test against West Indies at Edgbaston next year.

"Having a Test match in Birmingham under day-night conditions, it's a sign that they are clearly thinking that there might be day-night Test cricket bobbing up in other parts of the world when they have away tours," Sutherland said.

"We want to get through this second Test match in Adelaide under day-night conditions and make an assessment.

"Certainly Adelaide is a great place for day-night Test cricket.

"The reality is more people are coming to the ground, more people are watching it on TV ... but I'm not sure the rest of the world is necessarily on board with day-night Test cricket just yet."

International Cricket Council chief executive David Richardson, in Adelaide for the day-night clash between Australia and South Africa, was impressed with the latest version of the pink Kookaburra.

"The balls can last better than we expected and pitches don't necessarily have to be as green or as grassy as we thought previously," Richardson said.

"But still the climate, quality of floodlights and suitability of a venue for day-night cricket has to be carefully looked at before just scheduling these matches will-nilly."

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