cattle grazing ground converted to world class cricket stadium in ranchi
Ranchi, Oct 22: When Bapu Nadkarni and Ramakant Desai played a friendly limited overs cricket tie at Dhurva on the outskirts of Ranchi, they hardly believed the area would one day host India-England ODI at the state-of-the-art cricket complex 40 years later.
Along with Narendra Tamene, the two former Test cricketers have played the friendly tie at the now dilapidated stadium in the 1970s, barely two km from the spot where the new JSCA International Cricket Complex is constructed.
"The attraction of the stadium built within three years can be best expressed in the words of ICC representative David Boon - 'The spacious facilities with the potential to be an extremely great standard'," Jharkhand State Cricket Association (JSCA) president Amitabh Choudhary said about the stadium which will make its debut as an international cricket venue on Janauary 19 during the India-England ODI series.
The stadium will be inaugurated jointly by Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda and BCCI president N Sreenivasan on January 17.
"Once an isolated area fit for cattle grazing has become the centre of attraction after the construction of the cricket stadium," Chanchal Bhattacharya, one of the three coaches of India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said.
"Not far from the new one, there is the J N Stadium, which is in a dilapidated condition, Ramakant Desai, Bapu Nadkarni and Narendra Tamene played a friendly limited overs match against a local XI in the early 1970s. Nadkarni had scored a century enthralling Ranchi fans then," Bhattacharya added.
Lying barren barely till three years ago, the construction of the stadium on the 27-acre land began on June 19, 2009 and now the ICC has approved the ground to hold the ODI between India and England.
The JSCA president said the sporting structure would not be confined to cricket alone as JSCA desire to promote other sports as well.
"It is not only a stadium for cricket but has other facilities. A tennis academy is already there. A swimming pool will come up and so also other sports would be developed. That is why it has been named as JSCA International Cricket Complex," he said.
The Rs 180-crore modern stadium has a sitting capacity between 39,000 and 40,000, besides having all the modern facilities for players, officials, umpires and the media, he said.
Narrating the structural design of the complex, Choudhary, said the stadium has been divided into eight parts -- two pavilions (North and South), four wings or stands and two hills.
"There are four blocks or stands named as A Wing, B Wing, C Wing and D Wing. There are two hills, Eastern and Western. The Eastern hill is situated between A and B wings and the Western Hill between C and D Wings," he said stating that spectators sitting at any side of the stadium could view the game without obstructions as there are no pillars and columns.
There are other accommodations which are named as Premium Level, Corporate Box, Hospitality Box, Corporate Lounge and Dressing Room.
"On the side of Northern Pavilion. There are facilities for umpires, scorers, ICC match referee, match observer, anti-corruption unit and anti-doping unit."
Choudhary said as per the ICC guidelines several committees have been formed and important personalities have been named to head them.
Throwing light on the preparations of the ODI, Choudhary said India and England teams would reach Ranchi on January 16.
Expressing delight at the prospects of Dhoni leading Team India for the first time on his home soil in an ODI, Choudhary said international matches were not new to undivided Bihar or Jharkhand, but the January 19 ODI would be held after a gap of over six years in the state.
The last time an ODI was held in Jharkhand was at the Jamshedpur's Keenan Stadium on April 12, 2006.