Adelaide, South Australia
Established --- 1873
Capacity --- 31000 (approx)
Floodlights --- Yes
End names --- City End, Cathedral End
Home team --- South Australia
The Adelaide Oval remains one of cricket's most picturesque Test venues despite recent developments to increase the capacity and upgrade the facilities. Its position, situated amid gardens and trees and with the spire of St Peter's Cathedral as a backdrop, gives it a quintessentially English feel.
The ground opened in 1873 amid bitter local disputes over boundaries and money, and in its early years the pitches were often dreadful. Things gradually improved, although Adelaide's tendency to attract controversy remained. In 1884-85 it staged its first Test, but that was dogged by arguments with the English tourists over appearance money and who would umpire. In 1932-33, the Bodyline affair reached its nadir at The Oval when Bill Woodfull and Bert Oldfield were struck, and on the third day mounted police patrolled to keep the 50, 962 spectators in order. But these days the pitches are true and disputes rarer.
The ground has hosted many sports other than cricket - the biggest attendance there was 62,543 to watch the 1965 SANFL final between Port Adelaide and Sturt - as well as concerts.
The ground is a true oval, which makes straight sixes a rarity but ones square of the wicket more common. The western public and members grandstands and the famous scoreboard are all items listed on the City of Adelaide Heritage Register, and two news stands finished in 2003 have raised the capacity to 34,000 (for football) and 32,000 for cricket.