Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai

Waleed Zia

Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai

In India, cricket is more than just a sport. It is a powerful emotion that brings together millions of fans across the country. Among the numerous cricket stadiums in India, the Wankhede Cricket Stadium stands out as a symbol of cricketing excellence, history, and passion. Located in the heart of Mumbai, this iconic stadium has witnessed some of the most unforgettable moments in cricketing history. From thrilling matches to enthusiastic crowds, the Wankhede Stadium embodies the spirit of Indian cricket.

Wankhede Cricket Stadium

History

This iconic venue has a very interesting history regarding its making!

Mumbai is known as the Cricket Capital of India. Before Wankhede Stadium, it had two other stadiums, the Gymkhana Ground and the Brabourne Stadium. These fields were used to host international matches.

There used to be a clash between the Cricket Club of India (CCI) and the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) over the allocation of tickets. These disputes kept rising with time and reached their critical level after the 1973 test match between India and England. This led to the initiative of this stadium, by the secretary of the MCI and a politician of the time, Sheshrao Krishnarao Wankhede.

Construction

MCA (BCA; Bombay Cricket Association at that time) gave the contract of this stadium to  B.E. Billimoria & Co and appointed Shashi Prabhu & Associates as architect. 

This stadium was completed in around 13 months and with a budget of INR 1.87 crores (USD 7 million at that time) in 1974 in the southern part of Mumbai, on the shores of the Arabian Sea, near Marine Drive, Churchgate.

First Match

The first match to be played at this stadium was the final test between West Indies and India.

After this match, this stadium has become the central spot for all national as well as international cricket matches in Mumbai.

Reconstruction

Since Mumbai was chosen to host the final of the 2011 ICC World Cup Cricket, which was to be hosted by India, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, it was decided to renovate the stadium to accommodate contemporary amenities and spectator comfort.

Reputable architects were asked to present their ideas, and the Managing Committee chose M/s. P.K. Das & Associates and M/s. Shashi Prabhu & Associates to work together on a project for the renovation of the stadium. Both the North and South ends of the stadium underwent significant renovations, adding greater amenities for the fans such as bucket seats, a vast number of restrooms, and food courts.

Wankhede Cricket Stadium Renovation

Stadium Details
Owned byMumbai Cricket Association
Ends NamesGarware Pavilion End, Tata End
Home TeamMumbai Indians
Established in1974
Seating Capacity33,108
Hospitality Box Capacity254
Media Conference Hall Capacity150
Playing Area19310 sq. yards
Floodlights4

Seating Capacity

Following upgrades for the Cricket World Cup 2011, the stadium can currently hold 33,108 spectators. The capacity was around 45,000 prior to the renovations.

Wankhede Seating Capacity

The Canopy

The suspended cantilever roofing of the stadium is one of its features. The roof is made up of Teflon fabric which is heat-resistant and lighter. To provide the viewers with a better view, the roof is not supported by any beams. The heated air from the crowd is drawn by exhaust fans on the top, which also let in cool air from the west.

Wankhede Cricket Stadium

Pitch

The entire pitch is built of native red soil, which provides a little less bounce and somewhat improves batting. 

Over the years, the pitch has often favored hitters over bowlers. However, the pitch received harsh criticism during the fourth test of “the Border Gavaskar Trophy in 2004”, when it appeared that India had won because the match was over in just over two and a half days and was called a “Minefield” by then-Aussie captain Ricky Ponting because the ball began turning very sharply from the first session of the play. 

Due to the sea-breeze movement along the stadium, the speed bowlers typically receive some assistance with the new ball off the ground here.

Enclosures (Stands)

  1. Sunil Gavaskar Stand
  2. Garware Stand
  3. Grand Stand
  4. MCA Stand
  5. North Stand
  6. Sachin Tendulkar Stand
  7. Vijay Merchant Stand
  8. Vitthal Divecha Stand
Wankhede Stadium Stands

Stands and their Capacity
Boxes1116
Garware Pavilion4588
Grand Stand980
MCA Pavilion1634
Sachin Tendulkar Stand13338
Sunil Gavaskar4450
Vijay Merchant4052
Vithal Divecha3030

Records and Statistics

Test Matches

  • Maximum score: India’s 631 all out versus England in the 2016–17 season.
  • Minimum Score: 62, which New Zealand scored in a game against India in 2021–2022.
  • In “India against Australia” in the 1986–87 season, D.B. Vengsarkar and R.J. Shastri’s 298-run partnership holds the record for the greatest partnership at the Wankhede Stadium.
  • The player with the most Test runs is Sunil Gavaskar (1122 runs), followed by Sachin Tendulkar (921 runs) and Dilip Vengsarkar (63 runs).
  • Kapil Dev (28 Wickets), Anil Kumble (38 Wickets), and R Ashwin (34 Wickets).

Total matches27
Matches won batting first11
Matches won bowling first8
Average score (1st Inns) 339
Average score (2nd Inns)335
Average score (3rd Inns)205
Average score (4th Inns)131
Highest total recorded631/10 (182.3 Ov) IND vs ENG
Lowest total recorded62/10 (28.1 Ov) NZ vs IND

ODI Matches

  • Maximum score: South Africa’s 438/4 against India in the 2015 One Day International Series, followed by New Zealand’s 358/6 and India’s and Sri Lanka’s 299/4. 289/7.
  • Lowest score: In the 1998 season, Bangladesh’s 115 all out versus India.
  • The most runs in ODIs have been made by Sachin Tendulkar (455), Mohammed Azharuddin (302, and Virat Kohli (249).
  • Anil Kumble (12 wickets), Harbhajan Singh, and Venkatesh Prasad (15 wickets).

Total matches29
Matches won batting first14
Matches won bowling first15
Average score (1st Inns) 234
Average score (2nd Inns)201
Highest total recorded438/4 (50 Ov) by RSA vs IND
Lowest total recorded79/10 (27.1 Ov) by INDW vs AUSW
Highest score chased284/4 (49 Ov) by NZ vs IND
Lowest score defended192/9 (50 Ov) by WI vs IND

T20 matches

  • Maximum score: India’s 240/3 against the West Indies on December 11, 2019.
  • Minimum Score: Sri Lanka’s 135/7 against India on December 24, 2017.
  • England’s JE Root has amassed the most runs (131 runs), followed by India’s V Kohli (127 runs), and the West Indies’ CH Gayle (104 runs).

Total matches9
Matches won batting first4
Matches won bowling first5
Average score (1st Inns) 185
Average score (2nd Inns) 174
Highest total recorded240/3 (20 Ov) by IND vs WI
Lowest total recorded160/10 (20 Ov) by SL vs IND
Highest score chased230/8 (19.4 Ov) by ENG vs RSA
Lowest score defended143/6 (20 Ov) by WIW vs NZW

Unforgettable Moments at this Stadium

  • Before Yuvraj Singh, on January 10, 1985, Ravi Shastri smashed six sixes in a single over. 
  • The first ODI match, India versus Sri Lanka was won by the lead of 10 runs on January 17, 1987.
  • Sunil Gavaskar’s final match, which was also the semi-final match; India versus Pakistan, took place on November 5, 1987.
  • On February 22, 1993, Vinod Kambli amassed 224 runs against England in a test match.
  • On February 27, 1996, Mark Waugh made history by being the first player to achieve two consecutive centuries in a World Cup. Sachin Tendulkar also displayed his batting prowess in the same match, however, India lost.
  •  On October 17, 2007,  Murali Kartik, a left-arm spinner, set a record by taking 6 wickets for only 27 runs in the final ODI before the stadium was renovated, giving India a chance to win.
  • The final Match of the 2011 World Cup was won by the Home team; India, on April 2.
  • The Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar’s retirement test was played on November 16, 2013.
Sachin Tendulkar’s retirement

Tourist Attractions Near The Stadium

  • Mumbai’s earliest Anglican church is called St. Thomas Cathedral, and it is situated on D.N. Road, not far from the Wankhede Stadium. 
  • The magnificent structure known as the “Gateway of India” is close to the stadium and was constructed in the Hindu and Muslim architectural styles. 
  • The ‘Hanging Gardens’ in Mumbai’s Malabar Hills are another option for tourists.

How to Arrive at Wankede Stadium
Airport27 km
RailwayChurchgate Station (0.25 Km)
Local TransportRailways, Buses, Taxis
LandmarkBrabourne Stadium, Air India Building, Mantralaya Building
Google Map Linkhttps://goo.gl/maps/ewEwhokeRfwgAwvh9

What is special about Wankhede Stadium?

The 2011 Cricket World Cup Final, in which India defeated Sri Lanka and became the first nation to win the Cricket World Cup on home soil, was one of several high-profile cricket games that the stadium has previously played host to. The last match of Sachin Tendulkar’s international career was played at the venue.

Why is it called Wankhede Stadium?

The stadium is named after Sheshrao Krishnarao Wankhede, a politician and former secretary of the Mumbai Cricket Association

What type of pitch is Wankhede?

In general, the Mumbai Wankhede Stadium pitch is regarded as batting-friendly, particularly in limited-overs forms like T20s. The batters may play their strokes freely since the pitch is typically flat with decent bounce and lift.

What is not allowed in Wankhede Stadium?

Weapons, Cigarettes, Backpacks, Bottles, Sharp Objects, Binoculars. Food, Inflammable Substances, Helmets, and Drones are prohibited items. 

Which stand is best in Wankhede?

The North Stand is considered to be the best stand as it offers a clear 75 degree view of the field and a fun game experience if the baller is running towards you.

M. Waleed Zia is a Sports Expert with a keen eye on sports news and discussions. With years of experience, he has an all-rounder knowledge of Cricket.

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