WELLINGTON, (Reuters) – The first day-night test in New Zealand remains in doubt with New Zealand Cricket yet to receive council approval to stage the pink-ball contest against England at Eden Park in March.
More than two years after featuring in the first pink-ball test in Australia, New Zealand’s hopes of staging their own in the series-opener against England hinge on the outcome of an “independent hearing into using lights on a Sunday,” NZC said yesterday.
“We’ve completed a resource consent hearing with Eden Park and we’re hopeful within the next week or two we’ll have a result from the independent commissioners on whether it will proceed,” NZC chief executive David White said.
The March 22-26 match will be followed by the second and final test in Christchurch from March 30.
England, who also play five one-dayers before the tests, will begin their tour by joining Ashes rivals Australia in the first ever Twenty20 tri-series between full ICC members.
New Zealand kick off their home summer with two tests against West Indies in December, one less than originally planned, with an eye on the proposed ‘Test Championship’.
“We think it’s critical that we look to be innovative in this space and, also, that a test match championship is ratified by the ICC at its October meeting,” White said.
“The test game needs to have more context, and be more relevant, especially for the younger generations coming through.”
New Zealand, host of the under-19 World Cup next year, also welcome Pakistan for five one-dayers and three Twenty20 internationals in January.