Sourav Ganguly: Virat Kohli is open to day-night Tests

Updated: Oct 26, 2019, 08:33 IST | PTI | Kolkata

BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly reveals India skipper's willingness to play day-night Test cricket.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli

Kolkata: BCCI president Sourav Ganguly yesterday said that Indian skipper Virat Kohli is open to the idea of playing day-night Tests and it could be a reality in near future. He had a meeting with Kohli in Mumbai on Thursday where the idea was floated. "I must say that Virat Kohli is agreeable to it. There are reports that he does not want to play day-night Tests which is not a fact. So, once the captain of India is agreeable to it, life becomes a lot easier. We will see how we can push it. The game needs to go forward," Ganguly said yesterday on the sidelines of his felicitation by the Cricket Association of Bengal at the Eden Gardens.

The ex-India captain has been a vocal advocate of pink ball Test in order to bring back the spectators to the stadiums.

No time frame

"We all are thinking about this and we will do something about it. I am a firm believer in day-night Tests. I don't know when will that happen. But till the time I am around, I will be pushing for it," Ganguly said. However, it must be mentioned that if Ganguly's tenure is not extended beyond July, the day-night Test might not be reality as India next play five-day games at home only in December 2020-January 2021. The home Tests against Bangladesh are last for this season.

As a technical committee chairman, Ganguly in the past was a part of the decision to have Duleep Trophy under lights with the pink ball. However, domestic bowlers had complaints about the quality of the SG Test pink balls which were used. Also dew became a factor in the northern part of India taking spinners completely out of equation.

From 2016-17 season, it was played under lights before being scrapped for the ongoing season by the domestic cricket operations team of the board. At this point, even the Indian team are not too keen on playing day-night Test matches and they had rejected Cricket Australia's offer during the last away series. Ganguly reiterated the need to have a relook at the conflict of interest clause which is making it very difficult for him to get quality cricketers on board. "It definitely needs a re-look.

SouravSourav Ganguly flanked by his former India teammates VVS Laxman (left) and Mohammed Azharuddin during a felicitation function for the new BCCI president at Eden Gardens, Kolkata yesterday. Pic/AFP

We lose a lot of quality cricketers because they are involved in a lot of other things. Conflict has to be sensible. Nothing is a conflict if you hold an administrator's role in the BCCI. "We need to keep that simple and take it forward. We don't want to lose the likes of VVS Laxman, Mohammed Azharuddin, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Kapil Dev or Sunil Gavaskar helping the Indian cricket. A realistic look needs to be taken."

Asked whether he now is training his sights on the ICC chairman's post, Ganguly said: "It's just two days since I was appointed, let's not look that far ahead."
But he was ready to make it clear that he is his own man contrary to popular belief that some people in the old guard are trying to influence him.

I'm a difficult person: Dada

"I have been a difficult person to handle as at times I am my own man and I do what I feel is right. But with time I learned how to do things. Hopefully, we can work together. I've got a very young team and very rarely you have seen BCCI president and his team in the age of 30-40s. One thing I'm absolutely sure is that whatever time I'm here I will try and make a difference. I'm not going to sit and spend my time for people to say that 'I was the BCCI president'. I want to be a BCCI president who made a difference."

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