England's scheduled Ashes tour in 2017/18 could include a day-night match for the very first time, according to Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland. The concept, already popular in both one-day and twenty20 cricket, was first mooted back in 2009 and has been recently trialled in the Test arena as a means of attempting to ensure that interest in the game's oldest format does not continue to decline.
The first international of its kind took place between Australia and New Zealand back in November 2015. A pink ball was used throughout at the Adelaide Oval, with the hosts eventually winning by three wickets to take the three-Test series 2-0.
That particular day-night match was evidently deemed a commercial success and despite angering many traditionalists, plans to stage further contests this year appear likely. If those games also go well, then it seems almost inevitable that the Ashes schedule will be amended to allow for the first such meeting against England.
"It is certainly on the radar," Sutherland told ABC Radio. "We haven't had any formal conversations with the England and Wales Cricket Board.
"With the success of the Adelaide Test match this year, the anticipation [is] that we will have at least one day-night Test [in 2016]. It seems like it would be a natural progression for there to be an Ashes day-night Test match in 2017-18.
"We'll have meetings in Dubai [in January] with a lot of the chief executives and certainly be talking to counterparts in Pakistan and South Africa. They definitely know it will be on the agenda. The right place, right time and right conditions – we're going to see more Test cricket played in the evening."
England currently hold the Ashes after beating their old rivals 3-2 to recapture the famous urn on home soil in August. Both countries have now won 32 series apiece ahead of the next installment in 2017.