Thu, 22 Nov 2012 09:30:00 GMT | By India Syndicate

Interview: JSCA president on Ranchi’s first international cricket stadium

Meet the man behind Jharkhand’s world-class cricket stadium

Interview: JSCA president on Ranchi’s first international cricket stadium (© JSCI)

Behind the glass façade, the classy Ferrari tensile membrane roof and the hi-tech dressing room of the newly constructed JSCA International Cricket Stadium in Ranchi, is the hard work of the president of the Jharkhand State Cricket Association, Amitabh Choudhary. In an exclusive chat with MSN India, Amitabh tells us more about Ranchi’s spanking new stadium.

MSN: How and when did the idea of a cricket stadium in Ranchi germinate?

Answer: The idea of our own JSCA stadium had been in our thoughts for a long time, in fact, ever since I took over as the President of the Association. The primary reason for it was that the stadium which played central role in all our activities, Keenan Stadium, was not our own and it had its own connotations in terms of freedom of use. However, had it not been for the denial of Keenan Stadium to the Association since 2006 even for international matches the initiation and execution of this project would have taken a much longer. In other words, to a substantial extent, this idea was more a result of compulsion than voluntary thought.

MSN: What were the obstacles involved in moving the stadium from a blueprint on the paper to a world-class stadium?

Answer: The question is quite a misnomer because there were umpteen obstacles even before the blueprint was thought of. Availability of land must precede any formal design and plan for any project. It is here, land availability, that we faced the stiffest challenge.

MSN: How is it different (better) than other stadiums?

Answer: We firmly believe this stadium should be one of the finest in the country if not the very best. Whether in terms of aesthetics, engineering or design there would hardly be equals to this edifice. First and foremost, unlike most other new stadiums that have come up, it is within city limits, in fact, just five minutes’ drive from the Chief Minister’s office and about ten from the airport. It is situated on a quadrangle that has four lane roads on three sides.

And this not a stadium alone but a complex that also has another regulation cricket ground, a cricket academy, a tennis academy, a swimming pool, an indoor facility and other club facilities. The stadium design ensures that irrespective of where a viewer may be sitting there are no visual obstructions such as concrete or steel columns or nets. Another unique feature, and a first for India, are the two green top, east and west, hills for spectators. The crowning glory of the stadium, of course, is the Ferrari tensile membrane roof which invests it with its unique beauty.

MSN: What sort of pitches is the stadium aiming to produce? Will it be a fast track or the regular featherbed?

Answer: As with the other features, we intend to break from the past and in keeping with this the nine pitches of the main ground are going to be lively and will have something for batsmen, seam bowlers as well as spinners.

MSN: Who were the people who contributed  to the development of stadium?

Answer: We would like to record our gratitude to Chief Minister Shri Arjun Munda for his encouragement and help as well as Shri Shibu Soren who as the then Chief Minister had laid the foundation for the stadium.

MSN: Any special preparations for the debut match against England?

Answer: Considering this will be the very first ever international match at Ranchi no stone will be left unturned to make it a memorable event. The Organising Committee is going into the minutest detail to achieve this goal.

MSN: Have you modeled the stadium on any other ground- Joburg, WACA, or any other?

Answer: While no international venue was chosen as a model for this stadium we were not averse to absorbing features which have made it what it is.

MSN: What facilities will be there for the spectators?

Answer: Spectators will have facilities which are available in the best cricket venues in the world in addition to smooth ingress and exit, no visual impediments in viewing the match, food and beverages in addition to inimitable experience to feel the collective energy of a full stadium.

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