Pink ball now has black seam

Kookaburra, the cricket-ball manufacturing firm based in Australia, has changed the colour of the seam of the pink ball to black for better visibility. The ball will be used in India's first organised multi-day cricket fixture under lights.

The pink ball used in the Adelaide Test last year had seam coloured green and white.   -  AP

In order to provide more contrast to the pink ball and help the batsmen read it better, Kookaburra, the Australia-based premier sports goods manufacturing company, has altered the colour of the seam.

The pink balls to be used during the day-night match between two local clubs at the Eden Gardens here from Saturday will have black seam instead of a combination of green and white.

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“We have changed the colour of the seam since the Adelaide Test. After the Adelaide Test, where the ball had green and white seam, we spoke to (Australian captain) Steve Smith and he wanted a more visible seam. So, we introduced the black seam,” said Kookaburra group managing director Brett Elliot on Friday.

Elliot, who is here to witness the first ever day-night pink ball match in India, said the extra shine on the pink ball enhanced its visibility. “The visibility is massive especially when it is played under lights.”

Even as he agreed that the extra shine might help the ball swing a little more, Elliot said coloured balls swung earlier in the innings but settled down in due course of time. “We have designed the seam to provide support to the spinners as well.”

'Players generally conservative'

Asserting that the cores of red, white and pink balls were identical, Elliot said players’ inputs were mostly based on their perceptions. “For most players the visibility is better. Only one player thought the ball looked bigger than normal. Players are generally conservative. Before the Adelaide Test, they were not too excited but after that they said it was good.”

In anticipation of the first ever day-night Test in India later this year, Elliot’s company had been developing the pink ball at its Meerut-based office to make it better suited to the Indian conditions.

Elliot was hopeful that the 12 balls procured by the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) would last long enough in the experimental match between Bhawanipore Club and Mohun Bagan Athletic Club at the Eden Gardens. “The deterioration depends on how abrasive the surface is but the rate of deterioration is slower in case of the pink ball.”

He said since the leather was dyed in pink it might not lose its colour fast.

Meanwhile, rain played spoilsport as the two teams had to wind up their only practice session within few minutes.