As Team India will play two Tests in a calendar year, including their maiden day-night pink-ball Test against Australia, former India head coach WV Raman has said that the Indian team should practice a lot with the pink ball and focus on the limited-over series. Notably, India will visit Australia and play one Test, three ODIs and three T20 internationals later this year.
Meanwhile, WV Raman said that India should not be too involved in Test matches and they will be forgiven due to lack of Test match practice. It is also noteworthy that, Team India will play Test after 7 years.
“Getting a practice game now looks a bit impractical because there are a lot of restrictions and you may not have perhaps a good side to form from the local talent available. It’s not just about playing a practice game, it’s also about getting a reasonably good quality side. So, the best option would be to try and play as much as you can with the pink ball, try and practice with it, try and see what the bowlers need to do, get used to it in whatever number of days they have available,” WV Raman was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.
“It’s the same for the batters as well, they’ve got to ensure that they get over whatever apprehensions and anxieties that they may have with the pink ball,” the veteran further added before stating that they should not get overawed by the fact that they will play with the pink ball. “It shouldn’t matter because they should try and tell themselves that it’s a case of just playing a sphere with a piece of willow, that’s the best way to get into a game.”
However, India will play a Test in England next month and then the day-night Test in Australia. And, this is going to be after a long time that they are going to play two Tests in the same year as well.
“Even if things go unexpectedly badly, they shouldn’t be too disappointed because the important leg of the tour is the one-day series, and they enjoy playing the T20 format, and this is a situation where they’re playing a Test match after nearly seven years, so it’s not easy. We’ve seen that the best of sides can be a little bit rough getting into a Test game after a long break. A long break can even be three-four months, so seven years is a long time. They have everything to gain and nothing to lose.” WV Raman said.
However, he also added that playing more Tests in a calendar year will help them ‘become better in terms of match fitness’ as well as ‘test them in every respect’ for tougher competitions as well. While they will play a one-off Test against England from June 16, their Test against Australia will take place in September-October.
“What it (playing more Tests) does is that it gives them (women cricketers) the opportunities to play the hardest format of the game and once they start doing well, they will be hailed even more than they are today. If they play regularly, that also gives them opportunities and tests them in every respect. The other thing is, it also helps them become better in terms of match fitness because playing hard cricket for four or five days is going to be tough if you’re not used to it. Once they start getting used to it, I’m sure they will also start enjoying it,” he again shared.
“How many boards can sustain is my question. Maybe the top three-four can because it does take a lot of money as well. Let’s not forget the commercial side of it. Even if three-four boards are interested in making the girls play Test cricket, it is fine, and we must try and give them back,” WV Raman concluded.