Source : The Times of India, Last updated : 19 Nov 2019,8:19 am

The Pink Test: Eden Gardens readies for historic game

The Pink Test: Eden Gardens readies for historic game
KOLKATA: There is a predominance of pink at the Eden Gardens clubhouse these days. The graffiti has a pink theme, the clubhouse corridors sport a pink glow, Pinku the mascot is omnipresent and a pink balloon continues to float over the stadium.

The CAB is leaving no stones unturned to build up the mood for the historic pink-ball Test, that starts on Friday.

The striking colour apart, there was also this resounding buzz on Monday evening. Scrub-scrub, rub-rub, bangbang. Various sounds emanated from within the walls of the colossal stadium, even as the green at the epicentre remained tranquil.

There was frenzied activity in lobbies and multiple counters of the Dr BC Roy Clubhouse, while the turf looked greener than normal.


Even as the sun descended into the horizon and the big lights came on, preparations for the first-ever day-night Test in the country continued incessantly.

And of course, innumerable queues wound towards the counters where passes/tickets were being distributed. Former cricketers were there as well, collecting their quota of entry passes.

Commissioner of Police Anuj Sharma and his entourage conducted a recce as CAB secretary Avishek Dalmiya explained the proposed activities for the opening day. Going by the smiles generated during the secretary's detailing of paratroopers landing with the balls before the start of play, even the cops found the idea entertaining.

"There are two major activities in the city on November 22, the match and VIP movement," the CP said. "We reviewed the arrangements, and had a meeting with CAB and all related government agencies. Everything looks fine. I can assure you that Kolkata Police is more than capable of handling the security."

A greenish track will please Virat Kohli, who has the likes of Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav to unleash on the visitors. "All this without Jasprit Bumrah," Kohli had reminded after his pace battery had devoured Bangladesh within three days in Indore.

"Mark my word, this Team India will dominate world cricket for the next five years," former India batsman Ashok Malhotra told TOI. "We always had a good batting line-up, but perhaps for the first time we have a bowling attack to match it."


Green maybe a necessity for day-night Tests, to preserve the pink ball, but given the pace attack and bench strength that India boast of currently, this is probably the future.

The curator and his team held multiple discussions before deciding how much water was required, when and where. Friday onwards, the cricket world's focus will be on Eden and no one would be willing to take chances. The pink ball and its behaviour is likely to be tested on Tuesday.

"This is the right time to have a day-night Test here," former India player and current Bengal coach Arun Lal said.
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