Australia v South Africa Tests
Steyn would 'love' to play a day-night Test
South Africa pace spearhead Dale Steyn says he is desperate to play with the pink-ball and claimed the Proteas need only a first-class game to adjust
Sam Ferris in Rajkot EXCLUSIVE
20 April 2016, 09:21 AM AEST
South Africa spearhead Dale Steyn says he would "love" to play in a day-night Test match before his stellar career is over.
Cricket Australia today announced the men's 2016-17 international schedule which sees South Africa play three Commonwealth Bank Tests against Australia in November, with the final match in Adelaide intended to be a day-night Test.
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However, South Africa have baulked at the pink ball after heavy resistance from some players. But Steyn was confident “one, maybe two first-class games” with the pink ball would be more than enough preparation for a day-night Test match.
Last year's inaugural twilight Test at the Adelaide Oval was an unqualified success, pulling in records crowds, huge television viewership and delivering the most pulsating Test of the summer.
Now Steyn, a self-confessed sufferer of FOMO – the fear of missing out – wants a taste of the action.
"I don't want to go through my whole career without playing a day-night game," Steyn told cricket.com.au exclusively in Rajkot.
"How cool are they? I thought it looked awesome when New Zealand and Australia played one.
"It looked entertaining, there was a big crowd.
"The ball is pink – it's something different. You want to test your skills with that whole thing and it's very exciting."
A video posted by DALE STEYN (@dalesteyn) on
However, Cricket South Africa have yet to agree to a day-night Test and the South African Players’ Association have expressed concern over the "disadvantage" their players might face having never played against a pink ball under floodlights at any level.
Steyn said those concerns stemmed from the prospect of the day-night Test series being deadlocked.
"The difficult part of it comes in if it's one-all and we go into a decider and we play a Test match we've never really played before, we've never used the pink ball before," Steyn said.
"That could be a little bit of an issue for the guys.
"Australia, having played one before and having played a few first-class games, would have the upper hand on us in that sense.
"We're not moaning about it, it would just not be a level playing field."
But Steyn said all his teammates would need was a crash course against the pink ball under lights like the Black Caps had before treading into unknown waters last year.
In October, less than two months before heading across the Tasman Sea for the maiden day-night Test, New Zealand held a training session in Hamilton to trial the pink ball in the twilight.
When Brendon McCullum's men landed on Australia's shores later that month, their first match – the 50-over Prime Minister's XI clash in Canberra – was played in whites, under the floodlights of Manuka Oval and with a pink ball.
And after playing out a draw in the second Test at the WACA Ground, the Black Caps stayed in Perth to play a two-day tour match against a Western Australia XI under the same playing conditions they would face in the history-making Test a week later in Adelaide.
Despite their unfamiliarity with the iridescent projectile, New Zealand almost pulled off an upset win, falling gallantly to Australia by three wickets in the final session on day three.
That type of lead-up would be all South Africa would need to prime themselves for a day-night Test, according to Steyn.
"Absolutely," Steyn said when asked if a couple of first-class games would be enough to be ready for a twilight Test.
"I think maybe even one game so the boys can get accustomed to it.
"You can practice as much as you want in the nets but when you get out into the middle and there's pressure and all that kind of stuff you do tend to play differently.
"One first-class game, maybe two first-class games and it think the boys will be extremely into it.
"Right now I'm leaving it to CSA and for them to make a decision, but to be honest with you I'd love to play one."
Commonwealth Bank Test Series, Australia v South Africa
November 3-7, First Test, WACA Ground, Perth
November 12-16, Second Test, Blundstone Arena, Hobart
November 24-28, Third Test, Adelaide Oval, Adelaide