Chepauk looked very much a work in progress on Friday, just two days before Chennai Super Kings play their opening match of IPL-III against Deccan Chargers at home.
Of the three new stands at the MA Chidambaram Stadium, the one bang opposite the Madras Cricket Club still has scaffolding in place.
The other two look closer to completion and have canopies fixed. However, a crane was still moving things to the top tier while workers furiously painted walls, polished floors and set up chairs and advertising hoardings. In other stands, more workers cleaned thousands of plastic chairs and engaged in the impossible task of sweeping dust away with brooms. “If we have to say anything about the new stands you will get it in a media release,” Tamil Nadu Cricket Association's hon. secretary K.S. Viswanathan told HT .
A source, however, said while two of the new stands will be opened to the public from the first match itself, the other one will not be ready till "the third match, on March 31.
No tickets to that stand have been sold for now," the source added. The CSK players arrived at Chepauk around 3.40 pm in a bus sandwiched between two police cars. A few players, including the South Africans Albie Morkel and Justin Kemp and ICL-returned Hemang Badani headed for the nets alongside the stadium. After they returned, Matthew Hayden had his turn.
Divided into two teams, CSK players also took part in a practice match under lights, as they have been doing over the past few days.