The one-day international between India and Pakistan on November 12 at the Green Park Stadium in Kanpur will not be a day-night affair (as expected in local circles) as the BCCI has refused permission on technical grounds.
The BCCI has made it clear to the UP Cricket Association, that they cannot allow a day-night international without the floodlights being tested in advance.
Floodlights worth Rs 6.5 crore were installed in 2004, but because of political circumstances, not a single international has been played here so far. BCCI Chief Administrative Officer, Prof. Ratnakar Shetty, told HT that, “They haven’t conducted any match under lights. Let them host some board matches first then we can think about the issue,” added Shetty.
“The BCCI’s Pitches and Grounds Committee will inspect the floodlights and only when they clear it, will we be able to host a day-night game,” said UPCA secretary (sports administration) Prem Dhar Pathak.
“Since the committee members are unable to test the lights anytime between now and November, the Indo-Pak game will be a day game,” he added.
Preparations for the game have started on a war footing, as it’s been a while since Kanpur hosted an international game.
Incidentally, the last game was also against Pakistan, in March 2005, when Pakistan thrashed Rahul Dravid-led India. Since then, there has been no game due to a tussle between the UPCA and the then Mulayam Singh Yadav-led State Government over the issue of the now repealed Sports Act 2005.
As for those who feel Green Park is amongst the worst stadiums in the country, the ground is in for a face-lift. “The ICC has insisted there be a separate umpires’ room, more toilets, that the sightscreen be extended,” said Pathak. “The yellow grass from the ground is being removed and will be replaced with green grass,” he added. The pitch is also being re-laid.
On another note, he said Green Park might host one of the two four-day games against South Africa A in mid-September. Prof Shetty confirmed that the two games would be at the same time as the Twenty20 World Cup in South Africa.
He also said “some South African Test players” were likely to be in the squad. He did not say however, whether Kanpur would host a game.