Narendra Modi Stadium
Narendra Modi Stadium is the world’s biggest cricket stadium in Sardar Patel Sports enclave located at Navrangpura locality in Ahmedabad. In February 2020, Gujarat Cricket association unveiled Motera Stadium after being under construction for 5 years and was renamed Narendra Modi Stadium on 24th February 2021 in the honor of the current prime minister of India. Pink Ball test match was played between India and England on 24th February 2021 which was the first ever cricket match played in the new stadium.
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The newly built stadium was known as Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium and was built in 1983 which was designed by Shashi Prabu and constructed by Larsen & Toubro (L&T). Previous stadium had seating capacity of 49,000 attendees. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium was a well-recognised international stadium on which many important matches were played and many records were made. The pitch, where Sunil Gavaskar reached 10000 mark of test match runs in 1987 and became the first man to score 10000 runs, was this pitch of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium. Kapil Dev took record breaking 9 wicket haul against West Indies in 1983. In 2006, the stadium hosted 5 out of 15 ICC Champions trophy Matches. It also hosted 3 ICC 2011 World cup matches including quarter-finals between India and Australia. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium hosted 12 test matches, 23 ODI matches and 1 T20.
IDEA AND ITS EXECUTION
When Narendra Modi was the President of Gujarat Cricket Association and then Chief Minister of Gujarat, he proposed the renovation of Sardar Patel Stadium but later when he heard about Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), he proposed demolition of the stadium and build a larger stadium and Populous, an American Architectural and designing company, was hired for designing the new stadium. In October2015, the stadium was demolished for reconstruction and on 1st January 2016, tender for construction was released via newspapers. 9 bidders showed interest in the project but final three submitted technical and financial bid on time were L&T, Shapoorji Pallonji Group, Nagarjuna Construction Company. L&T was selected as the principal contractor as it was highest in technical rank and lowest in financial rank. The complete project was estimated around 800 crores.
WHAT’S SO SPECIAL?
Narendra Modi stadium is not only the largest but also the most luxurious and practical cricket stadium in the world. Spread across 63 acres of land, having capacity of 1, 32, 000 attendees, Narendra Modi Stadium has 3 entre points with a metro line at one of them. It also has 76 corporate boxes and 55 club-houses, an Olympics-sized swimming pool and four dressing room. Instead if normal floodlights, the stadium is fitted with LED lights. Company named Walter P Moore was hired specifically for roof work. The roof is designed in such a manner, that sitting area is not connected with roof and making it earthquake resistant. At the same time, pillars are not used in the structure which will help the spectators enjoy the unobstructed view. With all the facilities and high-end technology, the turf area is also modified. Now instead of just 3 pitched, the stadium contains 11 pitches making it one of a kind stadium in the world.
EVENTS, MATCHES AND CONTROVERSIES
Right before the pandemic struck the world, India hosted President Of United States in Motera Stadium, now Narendra Modi Stadium, on 24th February 2020. The event was named ‘Namaste Trump’ and was organised in the same manner USA hosted Prime Minister Narendra Modi in even named ‘howdy Modi’. The visit coincided with Delhi anti-CAA riots, a story for some other day.
Not so long ago, #boycottspiderman was trending on twitter because of a tweet of the actor playing the character for marvel movies. He came under the fire of Modi fans because of his sarcastic comment on Prime Minister’s modesty. The actor hasn’t responded to the incident yet but it certainly caught much attention. Even the politicians didn’t hesitate in taking a dig at the step of renaming. On that, government later clarified that only the stadium is named after the Prime Minister, the sports enclave is still and will always remain named after former deputy Prime Minster, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
India tour of England started with a historical day and night test match where the home team lost. To make a comeback into the series, team India showed great character and played smart cricket keeping the condition of pitch in mind. Things took an unexpected turn when the 3rd test ended in final session of the second day. The condition of the pitch raised a few eyebrows and many English reporters criticized the stadium pitch. The loss of visitors was a hard pill to swallow for English team and news sports casters. Later many legends of the game came forward in the support of the pitch and explained the so called experts about this little thing called ‘home advantage’.
Watching a match in the largest stadium is an unforgettable experience. When people only see that cost of this unnecessary need for the stadium and debate about the name of the stadium, these people often forget the reality of such a huge milestone and what will be achieved. Having the largest Cricket stadium of the world with seven star facilities and top notch technology gives the nation a sense of superiority in the field of cricket and pushes the nation upwards in the priority list of hosting ICC tournaments and cups. Spectators and players visiting the nation for important matches will help to increase tourism and boost local and national economy. Taking the crown from MCG and hosting the leader of a super power nation are milestones which open many unexpected opportunities which will be seen to public eye just in time.
Author- Amey Sharma
Category- Current Affairs