England agree to first day-night Test in Ashes 2017

| Updated: Dec 01, 2016 17:49 IST

Sydney [Australia], Dec.1 (ANI): England have agreed to play their first day-night Ashes Test when they tour Australia next summer. It is expected that Cricket Australia (CA) will soon announce a 2017-18 home Test schedule that would begin again at the Gabba. The cricket board is finalising the international schedule for the next season but the provisional itinerary has Brisbane resuming as the host of the opening match of the Ashes series in the last week of November, before the teams head to Adelaide and then in mid-December to the WACA, which is likely to stage the Perth Test, reports Sydney Morning Herald. CA have hosted two day-night Tests under lights over the last two seasons, one against New Zealand and the other against South Africa at the Adelaide Oval. Brisbane's Gabba will soon host its first pink ball Test, against Pakistan later this month. The ECB has not yet publicly committed to playing under lights during the Ashes but it is understood they have agreed in principle. James Sutherland, CA chief executive, had earlier said that there would be between "zero and two day-night Tests" played during the Ashes. CA has not yet confirmed the pink-ball component in 2017-18 season as the schedule still remains in a provisional format. However, if only one day-night Test is there, it is certain that it would be played at the Adelaide Oval. "I think the indications are with [England] having a Test match in Birmingham under day-night conditions, that's a sign they are clearly thinking there could be day-night Test cricket bobbing up in parts of the world when they have away tours," Sutherland said during an interview during the Adelaide Test. A CA spokesman earlier this week said that piecing together the summer schedule is a complex task. "We expect to be in a position to announce this schedule over the coming months once agreements are in place," he said. "We have two day-night Tests this year and ongoing scheduling of day-night Tests in the Australian summer is a natural progression. The Ashes is a great contest and attracts huge audiences both at the ground and on television, but nothing has yet been confirmed for next summer," he added. The captains of the two teams, Alastair Cook and Steve Smith, had, however, said this year they would prefer all five Tests to be day fixtures.(ANI)