Sad signs for Test cricket as holiday crowd keeps away

  • Khurram Habib, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • |
  • Updated: Nov 07, 2011 02:12 IST

At a time when Test cricket is losing its charm with the public, the Ferozshah Kotla was filled to one-third of its capacity on the opening day of the Test.

Despite it being a Sunday, few had expected a packed stadium. Still the crowd looked below par.

The attendance was recorded at about 13000, and that included about 2000 accredited personnel - like officials and journalists.

Kotla's capacity is 42000, so around 29000 seats were empty. Slashing ticket prices didn't work any magic.

About 20,000 seats were earmarked for R500 tickets (which include the daily R100 tickets) but less than half appeared to have been filled.

"We've been able to sell just about 10000-11000 tickets (in all grades) so far," DDCA media manager Ravi Jain said.

New experience
Now, this one shouldn't worry you. About 22 young boys from Jammu and Kashmir turned up unexpectedly to watch the first day's play.

The boys, aged 18-20, hailing from far-flung sensitive areas of the state were winding up their educational trip sponsored by the defence forces.

They were brought to the stadium, and after a lot of security hassles, were allowed in. "Some of us hadn't even seen a train before, so it was good fun," one of them said.


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