In­dian call takes toll on crowd

Warwick Daily News - - CRICKET - CRICKET: – Steve Larkin

In­dia’s re­fusal to play a day-night Test in Ade­laide has re­duced crowd num­bers by about 15,000, Cricket Aus­tralia chief ex­ec­u­tive Kevin Roberts says.

“We think we would have had 15,000 or so in­ter­state vis­i­tors if it was a day-night Test, so there’s no doubt­ing we have lost that group of fans,” Roberts said yes­ter­day.

Ade­laide has hosted daynight Tests since 2015 but In­dia re­fused a CA of­fer to con­tinue that trend in the series opener.

Thurs­day’s crowd was the low­est turnout for day one of a Test since Ade­laide Oval was re­de­vel­oped in 2013.

In day-night Tests in the past three years, Ade­laide’s open­ing-day crowds num­bered about 47,000, 32,000 and 55,000.

Asked if those num­bers crys­tallised the de­sire for the Ade­laide Test to be day-night, Roberts replied: “Ab­so­lutely.”

“You look at the way fans have em­braced it,” he said.

“It mat­ters what the fans think and they have voted with their feet.

“Those num­bers are in­cred­i­ble so we’re re­ally ex­cited about get­ting back to that in the fu­ture.”

Roberts hoped to con­vince In­dia of the mer­its of a daynight Ade­laide Test on their next tour of Aus­tralia in 2020/ 21.

“Let’s hope so,” he said. “Part of that fab­ric of cricket both na­tion­ally and in­ter­na­tion­ally is so rich so we em­brace the fact that they have had a dif­fer­ent view about this Test match.”

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