Floodlit day-night Test cricket receded further into the distance Friday when the International Cricket Council (ICC) said at least 18 months' research needs to be done on different coloured balls.
"We are not as clear as we thought we were," ICC general manager of cricket Dave Richardson said after a two-day meeting of the ICC's cricket committee at Lord's.
"Some are saying the orange ball is better, others are saying the pink ball is better, there are some who are saying this shade of pink is better than that shade of pink."
"There's a lot of anecdotal evidence so we are at the stage where we say 'let's get the scientists to tell us'."
Richardson told a news conference earlier that he hoped the research would be concluded in 18 months' time to allow the ICC to trial the coloured ball in domestic cricket.
Red balls, which are used in all first class cricket, are difficult to see under floodlights and white balls are currently used with coloured clothing and black sightscreens in day-night one-day matches. Richardson said the cricket committee has no objection to players wearing coloured clothing rather than the traditional white in day-night Tests, which would clear the way for a white ball.
"The manufacturers are in a bit of dilemma as you can imagine, they are trying to manufacture a ball but will it be pink, orange or white?," he said. "So they want a bit more direction from us."
The committee also decided to continue with the Decision Review System (DRS), under which players can refer an on-field umpire's decision for review by an off-field umpire who has the benefit of television replays using ball-tracking technology.
"After a lengthy and constructive discussion, the ICC Cricket Committee suggested that DRS should be introduced as soon as possible in all Test arenas," a statement said.
It has also recommended that DRS be used in all matches in next year's 50 overs World Cup in India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
The committee agreed that all reviews must be requested by either the batsman or the fielding captain within 15 seconds to thwart players in the dressing rooms with access to television replays signalling to their on-field colleagues.