New Zealand’s cricketers are apprehensive about playing Australia in the world’s first day-night Test.
However, the promise of a new era of trans-Tasman rivalry has convinced the New Zealand Cricket Players Association to give the all-clear to the historic Test in Adelaide from November 27.
The third and final Test in the series will be played with pink balls under lights, a concept that has previously been greeted with disquiet by leading Black Caps.
NZCPA boss Heath Mills revealed in May that 17 of the union’s 20 contracted players opposed day-night Tests in a survey, mainly because of uncertainty surrounding how the ball would be behave.
The players believed they would be “guinea pigs”, a sentiment that still exists judging by recent comments from captain Brendon McCullum and leading fast bowler Trent Boult.
However, they have been enticed by the lure of a seven-year agreement also announced on Tuesday.
The New Zealand and Australian governing bodies have agreed to play a total of 10 Tests and eight Chappell-Hadlee one-day international series over that period, guaranteeing at least 28 ODI fixtures.
Mills described the agreement as a fantastic and significant outcome for New Zealand Cricket.
“It’s fair to say our players are nervous about the day-night Test. It’s unchartered territory and because of that there will be uncertainty and apprehension,” he said.
“However, whilst the players have reservations about playing Test cricket at night, they see the bigger picture in the new agreement, and the greater good it brings to all levels of the game in New Zealand.”
The first two Tests in Brisbane (Nov 5-9) and Perth (Nov 13-17) will be followed by a 10-day preparation for the Adelaide Test. There will be at least two warm-up games using pink balls to prepare.