The Wankhede Stadium is a cricket stadium in the Indian city of Mumbai. One of the two major cricket grounds in the city of Mumbai, Wankhede stadium was established in 1974, in a record time of 6 months. It is barely a few kilometers away from Brabourne stadium, the next cricketing venue in Mumbai. Before the establishment of Wankhede stadium, Brabourne stadium used to host all the Test matches allocated to Mumbai. The Bombay Cricket Association had a dispute with the authorities (the Cricket Club of India) of Brabourne stadium. Consequently, it decided to build its own stadium, which is now called Wankhede stadium. In the present time, Wankhede stadium is the venue for a number of important Test and ODI matches. The stadium has a capacity of 45,000 and is always in contention to host an international match in India.
Wankhede stadium has been hosting international cricket matches since 1975, the first being the Test in the 1974-75 season, when the West Indies toured India. Since then, it has taken over from Brabourne as the main cricketing venue in the city. In 1995, Wankhade stadium underwent an up-gradation drive, during which, floodlights were installed to provide excellent lighting for the day and night cricket matches hosted by it. The stadium holds a special place, because no other India cricketing venues have produced as many legendary cricketers as the Wankhede stadium has.
The stadium has been witness to great innings like Gavaskar's 205 against the Windies and Kallicharran's 187 in the same game in the 1978-79 series and all round heroics like Ian Botham's century and thirteen wickets in the Jubilee Test in 1980. which England won by ten wickets. The highest score by an Indian at Wankhede remains Vinod Kambli's 224 against England in 1992-93 in only his third Test.
The cricket pitch is known to offer assistance to bowlers and is largely a spinner and pace friendly track. It offers spin and bounce to spin bowlers and swing to fast bowlers during the early part of each day due to the ground being close to sea. On days four and five of a test the pitch does tend to break up a fair bit which in turn offers great assistance to spinners. In 1995 the stadium was upgraded and lights were added to host day and night games. Later, in 1996 it hosted an India-Australia match in the 1996 Cricket World Cup.
The main gates to the ground are named after Polly Umrigar and Vinoo Mankad. The stands are named after famous Mumbai cricketers like Vijay Merchant (West stand), Sunil Gavaskar (East stand upper) and Sachin Tendulkar (North stand).
Mumbai, the cricket capital of India, has seen Test matches played at three different grounds. The Bombay Gymkhana ground hosted the first ever Test in India, in 1933-34 against England. After WW-II, the Cricket Club of India's Brabourne Stadium was used for 17 Tests. However, due to a dispute between the CCI and the Bombay Cricket Association, the BCA built the 45000-capacity Wankhede Stadium, less than a mile away from the Brabourne Stadium.
The seaside situation of the Wankhede stadium means that the swing bowlers get a fair amount of assistance during the early part of each day. The pitch has traditionally been full of runs, but it does help the spinners during the last couple of days. The Wankhede stadium has stands named after famous Mumbai cricketers like Vijay Merchant, Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar.
Ground facts and figures related to Wankhede Stadium:
• Capacity: 45,000
• Floodlights: Yes
• End names: Garware Pavilion End, Tata End
• Curator: Sudhir Naik.
• Architect - Shashi Prabhu and Associates
• Contractor - B.E. Billimoria and Company
Records at Wankhede Stadium:
• The highest Test total at the Stadium is 604/6 declared by the West Indies against India in the 1974/75 season.
• The lowest Test total at the Stadium is 93, scored by Australia, when it played against India in the 2004/05 season.
• India scored the highest ODI total at the Stadium. The team scored 299/4 against Sri Lanka in the 1986/1987 season.
• Bangladesh scored the lowest ODI total at the Stadium. The team was 115 all out, when it competed with India in the 1998 season.
• Ravi Shastri's six sixes in an over off Baroda's Tilak Raj en route to the fastest double-hundred in first-class cricket was on this ground in 1984-85.
• The highest partnership scored at the Wankhede stadium is 298. D.B. Vengsarkar and R.J. Shastri partnered to put the score on the board, for India against Australia in the 1986-87 season.
ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 matches at Wankhede Stadium:
• New Zealand Vs Canada on 13th March
• Sri Lanka vs New Zealand on 18th March
• Final of ICC World Cup 2011 on 2nd April
How to Reach Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai:
Wankhede Stadium is located close to the Churchgate station, which is one of the most important stations in Mumbai. Not far from the stadium is the Chatrapati Shivaji Railway Terminus too. To catch your favorite cricket team play at this stadium in Mumbai, you can avail any of the transport facilities from any area that you are in. From all the nearby areas, you can take an auto rickshaw, hire a cab, and travel in busses. Located in South Mumbai, one needs to travel to this part of the city in any of the available transport mediums.
Address of Wankhede Stadium:
Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai (South)