By STEVE SPINKS
FIELD ... check.
Stumps ... check.
Cricketers ... check.
BALLS! ... they're in China.
This is the scenario confronting organisers for this Friday's day-night International Cricket Challenge between East Asia Pacific and Far North Coast at Lismore's Oakes Oval.
Everything is ready, but the specially-made yellow four-piece balls that are to be used are in China.
The balls are being trialled on Friday in the 50-over-a-side game and, if they are successful, they will be used in the 100-over-a-side matches in January's Australian Country Championships at the same venue.
"The white leather balls usually used won't last 100 overs in the Australian Country Championships," carnival convenor and organiser for Friday night John McMahon said.
"But the yellow leather balls may prove satisfactory.
"Actually, the balls are manufactured in Australia and sent to China for stitching."
The chief executive officer of Platypus Cricket Balls, Gary Brown, is in China and is returning to Australia with a supply of the new yellow balls today ... hopefully.
McMahon said that if the Lismore experiment was a success and the balls proved their worth, it could mean regular Pura Cup games would be played under lights.
He said Oakes Oval could be one of the venues selected to stage such events in the future.