T20 World Cup: Drop In Pitches To Be Used For US Games, Fan Infrastructure Rented From Las Vegas F1




Temporary drop-in pitches prepared by Adelaide Oval curator Damian Hough will be used for the upcoming T20 World Cup games in the USA with the ICC building a temporary seating gallery of 34,000 capacity for the marquee game between India and Pakistan in New York on June 9. ICC’s Event Director Chris Tetley informed that the high-profile Indo-Pak clash will be held at the Nassau County ground, which is 25 km from east of Manhattan and the temporary gallery that will hold “more spectators than any ground in England as well as Wankhede Stadium” in Mumbai.

“We will be using drop-in pitches and it has already been constructed. We are utilising expertise of Adelaide Oval curator Damian Hough, one of the foremost exponents of drop-in pitches. He built the trays and overseen the installation of trays being grown in Florida at the moment under his supervision,” Tetley told mediapersons during a select interaction facilitated by the ICC.

“There will be enough number of trays for the match pitches that we need and training facilities in New York. Playing surface will be brand new and we are levelling the surface, installing drainage facilities,” he informed.

Infrastructure to be rented from F1 Las Vegas GP

Looking at the potential of the US market, which has largely remained untapped, Tetley tried to rationalise the need for temporary seating infrastructure over a permanent one.

“All infrastructure will be temporary like it happens across the globe in sports. Companies we work with do this every day a week and on timelines. Some of the infrastructural equipment will come from the Las Vegas F1 and will be brought from Vegas to New York and installed and then de-constructed and put back where it needs to be,” he said.

Tetley claimed that their research showed that “there are 30 million cricket fans in the United States and it has the third biggest broadcast market”.

While the levelling of the outfield starts in February, Tetley is confident of maintaining the timelines given to the venue operators.

“Infrastructure building starts in February and then construction phase goes on till early May. And at that point ‘drop-in pitches’ will be trucked from Florida and final grass grows in and then till end of May is a testing phase. The 34,000 capacity will be bigger than any stadium in UK and Wankhede,” said Tetley.

Obviously, the New York ground will be an untested territory and Tetley said that practice game and “systems testing” will be done before the first match is played at the venue.

In talks with MLC team to use the structure

Tetley admitted that all structures will be dismantled after the end of the event but Major League Cricket (MLC) are in talks with ICC to use the Nassau County facility for the second season.

“After the tournament, structures will come down but MLC is interested to hold some of the matches of their second season and they are evaluating, whether it will work for them. We finish in June and they start in mid-July, so it’s a conversation going on.

“The legacy will be a great outfield left behind and we will take out drop-in pitches and leave it with an artificial surface which will be easy to maintain.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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