Off The Field

BCCI stands with Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri, wants 5-day Tests to stay

Written by Vipin Darwade

The ICC cricket committee is set to discuss the idea of four-day Test matches, but it will, in all likelihood, get a red flag from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) as the Indian board is set to stand with skipper Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri.

Both the captain and the head coach of the team have made it clear that they want the traditional format to not lose its sheen by turning from a five-day affair into one of four days.

Speaking to IANS, a BCCI official said that while the board will discuss the matter with Cricket Australia and the English and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) around the BCCI awards on January 12 in Mumbai, the board is clearly in support of skipper Kohli and coach Shastri.

“See, it is only right that you discuss these matters and we will do the same with CA, ECB and Cricket South Africa. But as things stand now, we are on the same platform as our skipper and coach and don’t see much sense in cutting Test cricket to four days from the conventional five. In fact, it is not just our captain or coach, you have also heard the likes of Joe Root (English captain) and Faf du Plessis (South Africa skipper) make their opinions clear on the matter. It might be an option for the lower ranked teams, but not when two big teams clash. Tradition can’t be toyed with,” the official pointed.

Kohli made his opinion clear on the eve of the opening T20I between India and Sri Lanka in Guwahati and said: “According to me, it should not be altered. As I said, the day-night is another step towards commercialising Test cricket and you know, creating excitement around it, but it can’t be tinkered with too much. I don’t believe so.

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Vipin Darwade