Next season’s County Championship will feature a full round of day-night matches using a pink Duke ball.
The full fixture list for 2017 has been finalised, with a 7 April start date and nine day-night games all starting on 26 June.
The Championship has featured just one day-night game until now, a 2011 match between Kent and Glamorgan, and the innovation is designed to increase crowds and provide a trial for England players ahead of their August day-night Test against West Indies.
We were excited to announce a few weeks ago that Edgbaston will be staging an historic day/night Test, and it’s great that the counties, and the Specsavers County Championship, can also get involved, Tom Harrison, the ECB’s chief executive officer, said.
It was important for us to arrange a full round of fixtures to give our England players the chance to experience the conditions.
But just as we wanted to assess the impact of making Test cricket more accessible by changing the hours of play, the counties have really embraced the potential of Championship matches that stretch well into the evening when people have finished school or work.
The early indications from Edgbaston are that day-night Test cricket is proving very popular, and hopefully it will be the same for the Specsavers County Championship now the fixtures are confirmed. There are some really attractive matches in the day/night round, and it will be fascinating to see how it works out.
Next season will see seven rounds of matches begin on a Friday, with Middlesex beginning the defence of their title at Hampshire on 14 April.
26-29 June day-night fixtures
Essex v Middlesex, Hampshire v Somerset, Warwickshire v Lancashire, Yorkshire v Surrey
Durham v Worcestershire, Glamorgan v Derbyshire, Northamptonshire v Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire v Kent, Sussex v Gloucestershire.
(c) Sky News 2016: County Championship to feature nine day-night games in 2017