Smith warns against pink-ball Ashes as South Africa day-night Test confirmed


Australia's third Test against South Africa in November will be a day-night match in Adelaide, but skipper Steve Smith has warned against introducing the format to Ashes cricket.

Smith led his side to victory in the first day-night Test against New Zealand last year, and the Adelaide Oval will once again host pink-ball action when the Proteas tour.

Pakistan have also agreed to play a day-night Test when they tour Australia in December.

Smith believes the Ashes's sky-high popularity lessens the need for such gimmicks, however.

He told reporters in Guyana, where Australia are contesting a tri-series against South Africa and West Indies: "The crowds and the viewers for the regular Ashes Test matches are pretty good.

"There's a bit to be talked about there, but it's still a little while away. We'll wait and see what happens with that one. 

"My personal preference probably would be [to keep the Ashes to day-only Tests].

"I think it works pretty well with the red ball. It's been around for years and I think playing against England we always get the viewers and the crowds out. 

"So I don't think there is any issue there. But I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens."

South Africa captain AB de Villiers revealed that talks over the Proteas' involvement had centred on getting their players up to speed with the pink ball's behaviour - the Adelaide pitch was also kept especially grassy in the first day-night game - but the team will face a warm-up match under lights before the fixture.

De Villiers said in a statement: "As players, we are really happy to have grown our confidence to play a day-night Test match in a positive way.

"We were never against this exciting concept, but only wanted to give ourselves the best opportunity of competing in conditions that will be new and foreign to us. Two warm-up matches will hopefully give us an idea of what to expect and hopefully our preparations will help us to adapt accordingly. 

"This will be the first time that our players in the Test squad will play pink ball Test match cricket in front of such a large crowd and to be part of this novel concept will no doubt be a landmark moment in all of our careers."