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Morrant Blog

Dukes pink cricket ball.jpg

What’s so special about the pink cricket ball?

When you think of cricket you think of well-oiled bats, green grass, bright whites and shiny red cricket balls….the colour pink doesn’t tend to feature highly. However, the pink cricket ball makes its appearance in day/night matches, replacing the traditional red – so why is this?

Pink cricket balls are preferred for Test cricket under floodlights, as they are easier to see than red balls. A lot of cricketers complain that red balls lose their shine and colour when under the glare of artificial lighting, appearing almost brown in appearance and thus harder to spot during play.

Before pink as a colour was decided to be the best for spotting in harsh lighting conditions, experiments took place using yellow and orange balls. Ultimately, pink was the colour that was seen to be the best for using under floodlights.

First Appearance

The first pink ball to be used in a cricket match was during the one-day England v Australia International in July 2009. Pink balls were not used for day/night matches until later, during the 2013-14 Sheffield Shield Season. These took place 3-6 March 2014.


Pink balls look different but are made from the same materials as any other cricket ball – cork, rubber and woollen yarn. The colour used on the outer cowhide is the only difference, thus ensuring play styles are not affected by the differently coloured ball. Pink and white balls are painted, whereas red balls are dyed, waxed and lacquered.


  • England beat Australia during the July 2009 International, when the pink ball was first introduced
  • Different spin offs of the pink cricket ball have been produced for other games such as croquet.
  • Australian manufacturer Kookaburra were the first to produce a pink cricket ball, although you can buy them from a range of brands now including Dukes and Gray Nicolls
  • To preserve the bright pink hue of the leather when the cricket balls are manufactured, they are spray coated. During play, this coat will wear off, and the white colour of the alum base beneath will show through – this is seen as a ball “losing it’s colour”. To prevent this, most manufacturers add several coats of a hard lacquer, to stop the pigment wearing away.

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