Cheap Seats podcast: the Pink Ball special edition

Now seasoned bandwagon jumpers, Ryan O’Connell and I have again reconvened, this time for a day/night Test edition of the Cheap Seats podcast.

Once again the podcast’s regulars have climbed aboard too, with a sudden barrage of pink ball #AskTheCheapSeats questions.

All the big topics were covered, including the success of the historic day/night Test in Adelaide, the spectacle of the cricket itself, pink ball construction, it’s propensity to swing, Nigel Llong’s DRS howler, DRS in general, Mitchell Starc’s foot, Josh Hazlewood’s arrival, New Zealand returning serve at home in February, Brendon McCullum, the similarities between Mark Craig’s off-breaks and Brett’s, modern bats, a West Indies squad no-one’s heard of, Mitchell Marsh’s batting, and the $64 question about Usman Khawaja’s return to the side on Boxing Day.

As always, you can get us on Twitter at @CheapSeatsPod, on Soundcloud, iTunes, and the TuneIn radio app. And stay cheap – you never know when we’ll be back next!

Not just pink: plenty of Test Cricket pointers in Adelaide

The Adelaide Test was outstanding, and several elements from it should be applied to Test cricket more broadly. Image: ABC Grandstand

The Adelaide Test was outstanding, and several elements from it should be applied to Test cricket more broadly. Image: ABC Grandstand

The Roar: I think it’s fair to say the first ever day/night Test Match has been a raging success. The spectacle returned to the game, the pink ball stood up very well, and the cricket itself was excellent.

Once we got past the first ever wicket taken with a pink ball, and the first boundary with a pink ball, and the first ever misfield of a pink ball by team masseur substitute fielder, we were left with a well-balanced contest between bat and ball, played on a wicket from which both bowlers and batsmen found enjoyment.

And that got me thinking that beyond the ball, there were other important elements of the match in Adelaide that played just as big a role in the Test being as memorable as it was…

Adelaide. Pink ball. Win the toss and… ?

Will Steve Smith cast his mind back to the last time he captained a side in Adelaide, under lights, and with a pink ball?

Will Steve Smith cast his mind back to the last time he captained a side in Adelaide, under lights, and with a pink ball?

The Roar: Guess? Hope for the best?

It might be the case that the first ever day/night Test Match in Adelaide is one of those occasional ‘good tosses to lose’, because then at least you don’t have to guess what isn’t or isn’t the best thing to do.

Starting each day’s play later and going into the night was already going to add new elements of guesswork around the toss. But now a different type of ball too?

When Steven Smith tosses the coin this afternoon in Adelaide, his New Zealand counterpart Brendon McCullum must first decide if he sticks with ‘heads’. McCullum has lost the toss in four of the five Tests the Black Caps have played thus far in 2015, including both Tests in Australia this series.

My own pink ball experience has me nervous for Adelaide

Kookaburra have tried 16 different shades of pink in getting from the original 'classic pink' (left) to what I dubbed 'highlighter pink' (right), which will be used this week in Adelaide..

Kookaburra have tried 16 different shades of pink in getting from the original ‘classic pink’ (left) to what I dubbed ‘highlighter pink’ (right), which will be used this week in Adelaide..

The Roar: It’s not quite the same as facing or bowling with the new pink Kookaburra ball, but my own experience with the most important element of the day/night Test cricket revolution hasn’t been brilliant.

The Prime Minister’s XI tour match against New Zealand in Canberra in late October was notable not just because it marked the Black Caps first outing in Australia, but it also marked my ball-by-ball commentary debut for ABC Grandstand radio.

The commentary went very well; better than I’d hoped, even, but that wasn’t the issue. Seeing the pink ball was a bit of an issue, though, and I thought it might be useful to share the experience, and even see if anyone else has had similar trouble. It might just be me!