The first day of Day/Night Test cricket went off without a hitch. It was not the most exciting day of play and there were absolutely no problems with the pink ball. I think everyone could see it. To prove the point, a lucky lad took a sensational mark in the eastern stand in the final session when Southee tonked a six over square leg. The ball didn’t seem to swing any more than the red ball, contrary to expectations and the colour seemed to hold as did the shape, which was a welcome change from the previous test with the standard, red Kookaburra.
It was a pretty slow day of play with just over 250 runs being scored but I don’t attribute that to the pink ball. I was left with the feeling that we didn’t get too much night cricket. The sun was setting at about 8:30 and there was only about 60 minutes play when it was truly dark. Perhaps they should start a little later.
On a day without that many highlights, the most exciting period, aside from the novelty of the lights, was just after the tea break. Australia claimed three wickets in three overs, all caught behind by Nevill, from three different bowlers. I have to say that I was underwhelmed by Nevill’s keeping in the Ashes but he seems to have improved this series. He was excellent yesterday and the catch of Latham of Lyon was brilliant. It was one of those wicketkeeper catches to spinners that are so easy to under-appreciate. There was a thick edge and a big deviation and it was very well taken.
I’m heading off again shortly, hopefully to see some exciting batting from Steve Smith. New Zealand will have been very disappointed to have made just 202 but they are in the Match. With the Marsh brothers forming the middle order, the Australian order it at its most vulnerable for some time.