Edgbaston will host the first day-night Test in England against the West Indies, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have confirmed. The match is scheduled to take place between 17 and 21 August, 2017 and will be played under lights with a pink ball in a move designed to increase the popularity of the game and improve stadium attendance figures.
With this move, England will now become the third nation to host a Test match under lights following the Australia vs New Zealand day-night Test in Adelaide last year. Pakistan is scheduled to play the West Indies in the second day/night Test in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) next week.
"We're excited by the prospect of staging our first ever day/night Test match. It's a great opportunity to attract more fans to the game and see how staging Test cricket in the afternoon and evening fits with the working patterns and modern lifestyles, whilst maintaining the deep tradition of Test match cricket. We think it can help attract different fans and families to Test cricket and the innovation will certainly put the five-day game under the spotlight in a very busy summer for the game", ECB chief executive, Tom Harrison, said in a statement.
The idea of hosting day/night games is to encourage those who are at work during the day to attend the matches. The International Cricket Council (ICC) are yet to approve the timings but if everything goes to plan the match will have playing hours of 2pm-8pm BST rather than the English standard Test times of 11am-6pm.
While the day/night Test is a step forward in the game, the players have expressed reservations about the same in the past. Concerns have also been raised about the deterioation of the pink ball.