'Worried about lights': Virat Kohli expresses concern for the fielding team at Motera
The refurbished Motera stadium which was renamed after PM Narendra Modi hours before its international debut with the India vs England first-ever day-night pink-ball Test is the world’s largest cricket stadium with state-of-art facilities. While cricketers from both India and England have been mesmerised by the stadium and its infrastructure, India captain Virat Kohli expressed his concerns for the fielding team at the toss of the third Test against England.
Kohli said that lights could potentially impact visibility and added the players will need to adapt quickly.
The Narendra Modi Stadium, which was inaugurated by President Ram Nath Kovind, doesn't have the traditional floodlight towers but a ring of LED lights around the perimeter of its roof. It is similar to the 'ring of fire' at the Dubai International Stadium, which often poses a challenge to the fielding side.
"It is such an exciting atmosphere here at the largest cricket stadium. I'm a bit more worried about the lights than the colour of the seats," Kohli said at the toss ahead of the day/night Test against England.
"When it gets lost with the lights at the back, it's hard to spot the ball. We've played at a similar stadium at Dubai. It's about angles, body positions. You need to adapt pretty quickly," Kohli added.
During last year's Indian Premier League in the UAE, several regulation catches were dropped by fielders in Dubai due to the blinding lights, as compared to the stadiums Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. Kohli also reiterated that he doesn't think the orange seats at the stands would pose a visibility challenge for the players.
Meanwhile Ishant Sharma, in his 100th Test, gave the perfect start to India by dismissing England opener Dom Sibley for a duck after Joe Root opted to bat first.
Axar Patel then removed Jonny Bairstow for a duck in his first over.
England made four changes to their side that lost to India in Chennai. James Anderson, Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow, and Zak Crawley came in place of Olly Stone, Moeen Ali, Dan Lawrence and Rory Burns.
While India brought back Jasprit Bumrah and Washington Sundar in place of Mohammed Siraj and Kuldeep Yadav.
The four-match series is tied at 1-1.