England’s batsmen must react and adapt to the challenges posed by the pink ball when they face hosts India in the third Test at Ahmedabad starting on Wednesday, assistant coach Graham Thorpe said.
The four-Test series is tied at 1-1 with England needing to win the remaining matches to qualify for this year’s World Test Championship final and the chance to meet New Zealand.
But Thorpe said the immediate task facing his team was to tackle the changing conditions in the day-night Test and the swinging pink ball under lights at the Motera Stadium.
“Both our practice sessions… one has been in the evening and one has been in the afternoon. The challenge of facing the pink ball, the changing conditions… we’ll have to react well and adapt well,” Thorpe said.
“It’s a slightly unknown quantity but often the pink ball does a little more in the evenings than it does in the afternoon for the seam bowlers but we’ll also take a look at the pitch regarding the spinners during the daytime.”
Thorpe said he expected the seamers to have more of an impact in the match.
“It’s possible, without looking into a crystal ball. But I would imagine that the ball generally does swing more under the lights. We don’t have a huge database of pink ball cricket in India… so we’re looking forward to it,” Thorpe added.
“We’ve prepared as well as we can. We’ve got one more night of practice tomorrow.”
Thorpe said that England have a fully fit squad to pick from with batsman Zak Crawley looking in good touch after missing the first two tests with a wrist injury.
“His injury seems to have healed… he’s looking fit and he’ll certainly be in the mix,” Thorpe added.