Matthew Mott reiterates his call for five-day Tests in women’s cricket
Australia head coach Matthew Mott has reiterated his call for five-day Tests in women’s cricket but former India captains Diana Edulji and Shantha Rangaswamy are among the ones who prefer status quo.
Mott and England captain Heather Knight suggested the need for making women’s Test matches a five-day affair from four after the pink-ball game between India and Australia ended in a draw.
Close to 100 overs were lost in the game due to rain on the first two days. “It’s the five days for me,” said Mott after the drawn Test.
The head coach had also spoken about the need for five day Tests after the 2019 women’s Ashes Test.
“The last couple of Tests we’ve lost a full day, so you are essentially playing a three-day game on a surface that doesn’t have any wear and tear so it is difficult.
“Had this game gone another day, I think we’d have seen a very good Test. A little more time in the game would certainly help everyone. If you are going devote that time, I don’t think it’s a lot to ask for one extra day.”
India, who played their first long format game against Australia in 15 years, had also drawn their last Test against England in June. That was their first red ball game in seven years. As per the current rules, 100 overs can be bowled in a day over four days, 10 more than the men’s Test.
According to Edulji, however, the four-day format is fine. “We played three day games back in the day. As it is, there are only three countries (India, Australia, England) that are playing Tests in women’s cricket at the moment and India just started playing again.
“If it wasn’t for the rain in Gold Coast, there would have been a result in this game also. Anyway, you are allowed 100 overs in a day which makes 400 overs for the game, only 50 less than the men’s game,” Edulji said.
She said the focus should be on making a one-off Test part of the full fledged series and restart red ball cricket on domestic circuit.
Another former India captain, Shantha, echoed Edulji’s views. “Results should come in four days only. It is more than enough. There was too much time lost to the weather in this game. Instead, focus should be on more countries playing the longer format.
“BCCI must be congratulated for resuming Tests for women and it is likely to be a regular feature in our series with England and Australia going forward,” said Shantha, who is also a member of BCCI Apex Council and former chief selector.
“Whenever a Test happens in India, I would want it to be in a smaller centre which can draw more crowd. Also, it would be ideal if red ball cricket is restarted for the players to get used to the multi-day format,” she added.