CHENNAI: India and Bangladesh will play their first-ever day-night Test in Kolkata from November 22. Despite the series starting with three T20Is, all eyes are on that Test. Former Australia cricketer Dean Jones spoke to this daily on the upcoming series and the DN Test. Excerpts...
India have been in rampaging form. Bangladesh, on the contrary, are a new-look side. Who, in your opinion, can be Bangladesh’s game-changers?
I would like to see their T20 skipper Mahmudullah bat higher. Soumya Sarkar and Liton Das are starting to get some confidence at the top. Mustafizur Rahman is as fit as he has ever been. Players like Mosaddek Hussain, Afif Hossain and Aminul Islam have an opportunity to fill in the hole that Shakib Al Hasan has left. They, however, need a power hitter. In Tests, they might struggle but the pink ball might suit them. I’m expecting India to belt them but if Bangladesh can do well in the T20Is, I reckon that confidence will flow into the Tests.
How difficult will it be for the visitors to challenge India in Tests?
Unless Bangladesh have a strategic plan to play spin, I think they’re going to be in trouble. Their middle-order batsmen need to have plans to bat against R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja.
How different will this DN Test be from those held elsewhere?
In 2016, Eden Gardens hosted a pink ball DN match. We had a huge crowd. The players adapted well, the ball swung, Mohammed Shami got wickets and good players got runs. The only thing I would like to do differently is to have a law that compels to change the ball after 50 overs.
Players are worried that the pink ball might lose shine quickly, rendering bowlers ineffective.
I would say the same about the red ball on Indian pitches. We needed grass on pitches to make sure the ball lasts. The players also need to get their attitude right. You can also have colour code. When you put the ball through a ring then compare its colour and if it gets worse than a particular colour, change it.
Will dew become a factor at Eden Gardens?
We played the four-day match there and it worked really well. In T20I cricket, ball is hit out a lot but not in Tests.
Your take on the 1pm start in Kolkata.
The administrators are trying hard to find the best way and place to do it. In Australia we don’t suffer from the dew compared to India. Keep the rope around and spray the repellant as much as they can.
Will sighting be an issue with the pink ball?
I played with orange, yellow and pink balls and never had an issue.
The SG pink ball will be used for the first time. Is that a reason for apprehension?
If I know the BCCI, Virat Kohli and Sourav Ganguly, there would be enough experimentation before the first game.
Your prediction for the T20I and Test series.
It’ll 2-1 in favour of India in T20Is and 2-0 in favour of them in the Tests.
(Dean Jones is a Select Dugout expert on Star Sports)