Market Test cricket, like the buzz around pink-ball Test was created, suggests Virat Kohli

'If there’s enough buzz created around Test cricket, then there will be a lot more keenness to come to the stadiums,' said Virat Kohli

Reuters, Nov 25, 2019 12:56:31 IST

Kolkata: India’s maiden pink-ball match lasted a little over two days but the buzz surrounding the event proved that proper marketing is essential for the future of Test cricket, said captain Virat Kohli.

India’s board has often been accused of neglecting the longest format of the game, which has been losing fans to limited overs cricket around the world, but there was no doubt about the BCCI’s commitment to the day-night Test against Bangladesh in Kolkata.

Market Test cricket, like the buzz around pink-ball Test was created, suggests Virat Kohli

BCCI secretary Jay Sah felicitating Virat Kohli during opening day of the first-ever pink ball Test in India. Sportzpics

In the build-up to the match, prominent city landmarks were illuminated in pink, ticket prices were slashed, dignitaries were invited to attend, and players spoke excitedly about the challenges of playing with the pink ball under lights.

More than 42,000 fans turned up on each of the first two days, many of them drawn by the pink-ball novelty, and Kohli said this was how Test cricket should be promoted.

“I think it is very, very crucial to market Test cricket like we do for T20 or one-day cricket,” he said after his team’s victory.

“If there’s enough buzz created around Test cricket, then there will be a lot more keenness to come to the stadiums.”

Kohli suggested measures such as allowing school students to interact with players during breaks as a way to further engagement with fans.

“It should be an event where you come and experience a Test match, not just sit there and watch in hot conditions,” Kohli said.

“I think it has to be more for the fans and has to be marketed well.”

The series opener in Indore also drew a big crowd but India are not scheduled to play another Test series at home until they host England in 2021.

“It has to be marketed in a certain manner whenever Test cricket comes back home. There has to be enough anticipation,” said Kohli.

“The pink-ball Test is a beginning. I’m sure these will be planned more often and that buzz would be created in different parts of the country as well.”

Former captain Sourav Ganguly’s rise to BCCI president has been the catalyst behind India’s decision to embrace day-night matches and Kohli was convinced Test cricket would be a priority for India.

“We’re walking in the right direction and I think, under him, we’ll see a lot more positive changes which will be cricket-specific and priority will be given to Test cricket,” Kohli added.

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Updated Date: Nov 25, 2019 12:56:31 IST






Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 5046 120
2 New Zealand 3241 112
3 South Africa 3177 102
4 England 4593 102
5 Australia 3672 102
6 Sri Lanka 3795 95
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7364 121
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 5019 98
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 8366 270
2 Australia 6986 269
3 England 5568 265
4 South Africa 4720 262
5 India 10071 258
6 New Zealand 6056 252