The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on 21 July announced t heeight venues for the highly-anticipated ICC World T20 tournament scheduled in 2016.
The ICC event, to be held from 11 March to 3 April, will be hosted in eight cities across India - Bengaluru, Chennai, Dharamshala, Kolkata, Mohali, Mumbai, Nagpur and New Delhi. Kolkata's Eden Gardens, the oldest cricketing venue in the country, will host the final.
While disclosing the eight venues for the tournament, BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur revealed, "BCCI is extremely proud to host this prestigious event. All the venues identified have hosted many prestigious matches. With this announcement, we have begun our preparations in right earnest. We want this World Twenty20 to be a memorable experience for our participants and fans. I am confident that all the venues nominated will deliver a world class event."
The showpiece event of the shortest format will take place for the first time in the cricket-crazy nation. India won the inaugural ICC World T20 tournament in 2007.
2016 ICC World T20 venues
Eden Gardens (Kolkata): After missing out on hosting big ticket games during the World Cup held in India four years ago, the iconic stadium has been selected to host the summit clash in the 2016 ICC World T20 tournament. Eden Gardens has hosted marquee matches in the past, notably the 1987 Reliance Cup final and 1996 World Cup semi-final - which India forfeited to eventual champions Sri Lanka due to a crowd disruption.
HPCA stadium (Dharamsala): The scenic stadium, located in the stunning backdrop of the Himalayas, seems to have grown in stature ever since it's success in hosting the IPL matches. The stadium has hosted two One-Day Internationals (ODIs) - the fifth ODI between India and England in early 2013 and the fourth ODI between India and West Indies in October 2014. The stadium will once again be in the spotlight during the upcoming ICC event.
Feroz Shah Kotla stadium (New Delhi): Feroz Shah Kotla is the second oldest international cricket stadium in India. The ground is most famously known for Anil Kumble's 10 wickets in an innings against Pakistan, Sachin Tendulkar's 35th Test ton to overcome Sunil Gavaskar as the batsman with the highest Test hundreds, and formerly Gavaskar's 29th test ton to equal Don Bradman's tally of 29 centuries.
The stadium hosted its first One-Day International (ODI) on 15 September, 1982. Kotla's image in international cricket suffered a massive blow in 2009 after an ODI between India and Sri Lanka was abandoned due to an unpredictable pitch, deemed dangerous for play.
Wankhede stadium (Mumbai): With a capacity of 45,000 spectators, the Wankhede stadium has been a prime destination for international cricket in India. Built in 1974, the Wankhede stadium hosted its first Test match when India locked horns with West Indies on January 23, 1975. The first One-Day International(ODI) at the stadium took place on January 17, 1987 when India played against Sri Lanka.
M Chinnaswamy stadium (Bengaluru): Established in 1969, the M Chinnaswamy stadium boasts a capacity of 40,000 spectators. The stadium regularly hosts Test matches, ODIs and first-class cricket games played in the country. It is also the home ground of Royal Challengers Bangalore during the Indian Premier League season. The stadium also played host to Sunil Gavaskar's gem of an innings when India lost to Pakistan in the series decider in 1987. The M Chinnaswamy stadium hosted its first ODI in 1982 that was played between India and Sri Lanka.
MA Chidambaram stadium (Chennai): Named after MA Chidambaram - the former BCCI president, the stadium is one of the oldest grounds in India. Established in the year 1916, the stadium is the home ground of IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings. The stadium witnessed Indian cricket team's first ever Test victory in 1952 against England. Also, Sunil Gavaskar notched up his record breaking 30th Test hundred on this ground in 1983-84. The MA Chidambaram stadium hosted its first ODI in 1987 when India locked horns with the touring Australian brigade.
PCA stadium (Mohali): The Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium, also known as the Mohali stadium, is the home of IPL franchise Kings XI Punjab. Established in 1993, the construction of the stadium took around Rs 25 crore and 3 years to complete. The stadium is the 19th and relatively a new Test cricket venue in India. The stadium was inaugurated with a One Day International match between India and South Africa during the Hero Cup on 22 November 1993.
VCA stadium (Nagpur): Built in 2008, the Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA) stadium has been praised by the International Cricket Council (ICC) as a top-class venue for international cricket. The VCA Stadium is the home ground for the Vidharba and Central Zone teams for the domestic Ranji Trophy and Duleep Trophy tournaments, respectively. The stadium hosted its first ODI in 2009 that was played between India and Australia.