T20 World Cup 2022: The stage is set for the biggest clash of the year. It is time to paint the sky blue and green. It is time for India and Pakistan to clash and set the tone for the ongoing T20 World Cup. Australia will clash with New Zealand in the World Cup opener, but it is the Indo-Pak clash that will witness tempers flaring and emotions running high. Rohit Sharma's team India will take on Babar Azam's Pakistan on October 23, 2022, at the mighty Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).
The magnitude of the match is certainly something that does justice to the MCG aka 'the G'. Founded in 1838 and opened in 1854, the Melbourne Cricket Ground is the second-largest cricket stadium in the world and is just behind Gujarat's Narendra Modi Stadium. Cricket, Rugby, and Australian Rules Football are the major sporting events held regularly at the MCG. The cricket stadium also played host to other sporting mega events such as the 1956 Summer Olympics, the 2006 Commonwealth Games, and a few of the FIFA World Cup qualifier games.
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As far as the gentleman's game is concerned, the MCG plays a huge role in its history. The legendary cricket ground gave birth to the Test format on March 15, 1877, when Australia and England took on each other in a timeless match. Since then, the historic ground has been host to over 100 Test matches, including the famous Boxing Day Test match, which is held every year on December 26. Such is the coincidence of history that MCG also happens to be the ground that gave birth to the One Day International (ODI) format.
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The gigantic 171m x 146m field at the MCG is as of now surrounded by our stands - Great Southern Stand, MCC Members' Reserve, Olympic Stand, and Ponsford Stand - named in honour of Victorian batsman Bill Ponsford. Since then, the MCG has seen numerous changes to take its current shape. Known as one of the worst-behaved sections in the cricketing fraternity, the infamous Bay 13 is a part of the Southern stand.
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The first scoreboard that was built at the MCG was way back in 1882. Over the years it has been given as many enhancements as possible and today it is the best and the largest scoreboard available in Australia. The MCG Scoreboard is a state-of-the-art LED-high-definition screen that is 25.24 metres wide and 13.17 meters high. The advancements are such that it enables the viewers to see both, batting and bowling cards on one screen. MCG also happens to be the ground where Australia's first full-colour video scoreboard was put in place. In addition to everything, the world's first all-colour cricket scoreboard with instant replays was installed at the MCG.
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Considered one of the most competitive surfaces around the world, the turf of MCG has been witness to the rise and fall of many legendary cricket players. The surface is a perfect blend that offers assistance to both batsmen and bowlers. The bowlers certainly get some assistance early on, but as soon as it starts getting old, the batsmen can play their strokes freely. There is nothing much for the spinners, but they can create trouble for the batsmen if they bowl at good lengths.
When India clashes against Pakistan on October 23, 2022, fans from both nations will thump the air in delight and watch their favourite stars in action as they have a crack at each other to start their World Cup campaign on a victorious note.