At Navrangpura, Ahmedabad, Gujrat, there is a cricket stadium that holds the honour of hosting the first-ever One Day International Match played in India on November 25, 1981. The match was played between India and England. The match was reduced to 46 overs. India scored 156 for 7. Dilip Vengsarkar top scored with 46 runs. England replied with 160 for 5 and won the match by five wickets and 13 balls to spare. Mike Gatting and Ian Botham were unbeaten on 47 and 25 respectively.

This stadium is known as the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium and at times referred to as the Sports Club of Gujrat. The stadium is one of the home grounds of the Gujarat cricket team that plays in the domestic tournament of Ranji Trophy. It is equipped with floodlights for day-and-night games and is a regular venue during Indian domestic cricket season.

The Sardar (Vallabhbhai) Patel Stadium is owned by Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation. The stadium is situated in the heart of the city. It is mainly used for Cricket, but it has also played host to a number of programs arranged by the Government of Gujarat.

Once a new stadium came up in Motera in 1982, the Sardar (Vallabhbhai) Patel stadium hasn’t been used for international cricket matches. The Motera Stadium now hosts all ODI Matches and Test Matches in the city.

The Government of Gujarat donated a 100-acre stretch of land on the banks of the Sabarmati River to build a new stadium back in 1982.

The construction of the Sardar Patel Stadium was completed in nine months.

Since then, all International cricket fixtures for the city are hosted here.

In the 1984-85 Australia-India series, Sardar Patel Stadium hosted its first ODI, in which Australia defeated India.

During the high-voltage IndoPak series in 1986-87, Sunil Gavaskar was the first cricketer to score 10,000 runs in Test cricket. 4 years earlier, the great Kapil Dev took a nine-wicket haul against the mighty West Indies, and claimed his 432nd Test wicket at the stadium to become the highest wicket-taker in the world in 1994 against Sri Lanka, which broke Sir Richard Hadlee’s previous record.

In 1996, the stadium witnessed a low-scoring thriller Test match between India and South Africa, where India prevailed – Javagal Srinath nailed the Proteas batting line-up with six wickets.

12 years later, South Africa paid back by inflicting an innings defeat and in 2012, India started off the 4-match Test series against England with a winning note on this ground.

The stadium underwent renovation in 2006 in order to host the mega-event – The ICC Champions Trophy.

Floodlights and covered stands were introduced at the stadium as a part of the renovation program.

The stadium hosted 5 matches out of 15.

The Sardar Patel Stadium has hosted games whenever India has hosted the Cricket World Cup, including the first match of the 1996 World Cup between England and New Zealand. However, while the stadium hosted only one game each in 1987 and 1996; it hosted three games in the 2011 World Cup, including the quarter-finals between Australia and India.

Sachin Tendulkar became the first cricketer to score 18,000 runs in One Day Internationals.

As of 19 August 2017, Sardar Patel has hosted 12 Tests, 23 ODIs, and 1 T20I.

In 2015, the stadium was demolished for reconstruction, though some media referred to it as a renovation.

The total cost of reconstruction was estimated to be ₹700 crores.

However, the final cost was reported at ₹800 crores.

The redevelopment originally planned to be completed in 2019, finished in February 2020.

The idea to build the new stadium was allegedly proposed by Narendra Modi, the president of the Gujarat Cricket Association and the Chief Minister of Gujarat at the time.

Shortly before Modi moved to Delhi after becoming the Prime Minister of India, there were discussions about minor upgrades to the stadium and development of the structure at the pavilion end.

Modi asked the officials to build a new larger stadium instead of minor renovation work when he learned about the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and at present, the Sardar Patel Stadium has become one of the wonders of the world – the biggest stadium in the world cricket.

The newly renovated Sardar Patel Stadium will host the third Test between India and England on February 24.

The capacity for this week’s Test, starting on Wednesday, has reportedly been reduced to 50% due to concerns over COVID-19, but fans have been quick to buy tickets for what will be the first men’s international in the city since 2014.

“Ahmedabad is totally sold out, the day-night Test match because it’s the first game there after a long period of time,” BCCI president Sourav Ganguly told Star Sports.”

“So, happy to see normalcy back. It’ll be fantastic, it’s sold out.”

“… We want to see every seat and stand full. And that’s what it is, the tickets have gone, as well as for the T20s (that follow the Tests).”

The Sardar Patel aka Motera Stadium can host up to 110, 000 people – obviously, more than the MCG.

This outstanding stadium in Ahmedabad will not only serve as a world-class cricketing landmark but also has the potential to bolster other sports like football, hockey, basketball, kabaddi, boxing, lawn tennis, athletic track, squash, billiards, badminton, and swimming.

It has newly installed LED floodlights that will eliminate shadows making it easier to spot the aerial balls during the upcoming Day/Night Test between India and England.

The world’s largest cricket stadium will also have 11 center strips, which is also unique along with never before heard four dressing rooms with an in-built gymnasium, said Gujarat Cricket Association’s joint secretary Anil Patel.

Ahmedabad has created something special and the whole world is eager to witness a historic Test on the biggest cricket stadium in the world.

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