HYDERABAD: The Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, the pride of Hyderabad cricket, is all set to don a grander look when the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) will conduct the inaugural Champions League Twenty20 tournament and then the India- Australia One-Day International on November 5.
“The stadium would have a spanking new look. We have decided to complete all the works, including painting, indoor practice hall and other minor works before the Champions League. Of course, our next aim would be to provide canopy to the open stands. This will be taken up at a later stage,’’ said MV Sridhar, secretary of HCA.
Speaking to Expresso, Sridhar said the HCA is geared to host the Champions League. “We will have five Champions League matches, including the semi-final and final. Apart from that, we will have the India-Australia One-Day match in November,’’ he said.
The 45,000-capacity stadium has been hailed by many cricketers, including Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid as one of the best in the world because of the massive dressing rooms and other facilities.
Started in 2004 with an estimated cost of Rs 40 crore, the venue has already witnessed two ODIs (India-South Africa in 2005 and India-Australia in 2007) and also the Indian Premier League matches. The stadium is waiting for Test status to be granted by the International Cricket Council. “It is a matter of time before the ICC approves this venue as Test centre,” said a confident Sridhar.
The stadium wore an incomplete look because of the unadorned walls. “Painting works will give the stadium the much-need spark,” said Sridhar. The stadium had installed the floodlights and erected chairs to all the stands last year.