England in India 2012-13 November 19, 2012

No swap in venue for second India-England Test

ESPNcricinfo staff
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BCCI sources have indicated that that the second Test between India and England will go ahead, as scheduled, in Mumbai. There were concerns that the Test, which starts on Friday, might be moved to Kolkata following the death of the politician and Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray.

England fans heading to Mumbai for the second Test awoke to conjecture that a switch of venues could be considered in the wake of the death of Thackeray, a dominant political figure in the city, as thousands of extra police patrolled the streets to ensure order.

Mumbai was slowly getting back to normal on Monday, after the cremation of Thackeray the previous day, as the Shiv Sena clarified that it had not called for a bandh - a period of inactivity - in his honour.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • McGorium on November 20, 2012, 19:20 GMT

    [I've disabled facebook's access to external sites so I can't see names of facebook posters. Apologies for not using your names in my replies]: The Ghaziabad example might be flawed because Ranji ticket prices are way lower than test (maybe that's part of the problem). The plain truth of the matter is that test cricket has (and will have) a very small audience compared to ODI's or T20's in India. I suspect (i.e. no empirical data) that a significant proportion of *test* cricket fans are middle-class. Probabilistically, large population centers such as big metros are most likely to have interested audiences in sufficient number to fill a stadium. Mohali or Nagpur simply don't fit that bill; there just isn't enough critical mass. Jharkhand or JK can, and will produce test cricketers. Until it has a sufficiently large test viewership, however, giving them tests is unfair on other venues that patronize it. Perhaps cutting ticket prices might change things; I state this on current status

  • on November 20, 2012, 18:05 GMT

    Well Scratchingtendulkar, I saw the first test at Brisbane between Aus and SA, top two teams in the world and most of the stadium was empty. I saw all the tests when India toured Aus last year and in all the test matches there were hardly 5K-10K people and this is Australia one of the top cricket nation, it might be different in England but that might be just one country, everywhere else test cricket hardly attracts any crowd specially not compared to the sports I mentioned in my post. Further my point was mostly towards - "Diminished Crowds is a world wide problems...", it is not a world wide problem because people come and watch other sports - NFL, Soccer, MLB or NBA.

  • Tlotoxl on November 20, 2012, 15:36 GMT

    Nampally: the problem with Cricket and Test cricket in particular is the chronic lack of willingness to move in to the 20th century let alone the 21st, coming off for "bad light" when there are floodlights on, waiting for hours and hours after it stops raining to start play again, slow over rates, high ticket prices - it is all a toxic mix driving crowd away from the Stadia.

  • Scratchingtendulkar on November 20, 2012, 9:08 GMT

    @Neeraj Khanna. Your statement is wrong, as test cricket crowds are thriving in some countries. In England, most test matches are sold out months in advance (at least forthe first 4 days), particularly when the 'big boys' Australia or South Africa tour. It is the ODI's and meaningless T20's that tend to be easier to buy tickets for.

  • on November 20, 2012, 7:00 GMT

    @Nampally "Diminished Crowds is a world wide problems now due to game being available on TV & poor Marketing of the games." You are absolutely wrong, it is the Test cricket which can't draw people to stadiums, it is not the problem with other sports like NFL, Soccer, Baseball or NBA. Every NFL game is sold out and infact Packers fans are on waiting list for more than 10 years to get a regular price ticket. Baseball teams generally draw 35000 people every day and they play 162 games per season. So it is just Test cricket problem not the world wide problem.

  • on November 20, 2012, 4:02 GMT

    @McGorium,India need not do what Australia and England have done.It's in the interest of Indian cricket to spread test cricket to all parts of the country.We have come a long way since the days of big cities' hegemony o'er the game in India.The game is being played in earnest by boys from Tripura,Jharkhand,J&K and other such states that do not have a long tradition of cricket;on their day they can give the history rich teams a run for their money.While this has happened,in part due to successful commercialization of the game in India,and the ubiquitous cable,some credit must also go to the rotation policy that has seen the game go to different parts of the country,rather than sit in a few old stadiums feeling smug about history. Smaller venues too can bring good crowds;the first round of Ranji games had a match at Ghaziabad being watched by a crowd 15,000 enthusiastic fans;with international sides playing and good facilities one can expect a lot more than 15,000.

  • McGorium on November 20, 2012, 3:01 GMT

    @Avoidingwork:NE monsoon doesn't affect Bombay :) Madras and Blr, you're probably right, especially during December-Feb. I don't know if it's heavy enough in Blr to wash out entire days' worth of play, but fair point. I was generally alluding to this habit of the BCCI of awarding test matches to grounds based on zones rather than public patronage. If winter rains are expected in the south, play games in Calcutta (after the cyclone season), Bombay (Brabourne or Wankhede), or Delhi. It makes no sense playing to empty stadiums in Cuttack, Kanpur, Nagpur, Hyderabad, etc. if people don't show up, and more importantly, people in other places who will show up are being deprived of the opportunity. ODI's and T20's in India almost always play to full houses regardless of where it's being played, so makes sense IMHO to keep tests to venues that patronize them

  • Nampally on November 19, 2012, 19:17 GMT

    @McGorium: You are right in your backing for Test Centres attracting big crowds. At one time Calcutta used to attract routinely a crowd of 90,000. Recent Ahmadabad Test match had very poor crowd from TV pictures. I think it might have been <5,000!. Most of the Stands were empty. Madras (Chennai) as well as Bangalore are great places where Cricket is still popular. Delhi is not a good place for the crowds anymore. Also the gate prices should be reasonable to induce people to go to watch the game along with all other facilities such as clean toilets, cheaply available snacks & transportation to the ground & back. Gate prizes will also be an incentive. Diminished Crowds is a world wide problems now due to game being available on TV & poor Marketing of the games.

  • on November 19, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    Those who are shouting Panesar, he has a terrible record against India and all sub continent teams. He may be little bit better than Samit Patel as bowler - but Samit has an edge in batting. He just got unlucky in both the innings.

  • ProdigyA on November 19, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    satish619 - you say stop the run and attack relentlessly? Contradictions in the same line. If you want to attack all the time you have to set attacking fields which will mean more mean around the bat and thus more scoring opportunities. If you want to stem the flow of run then you need a defensive field. An inside-out feild is neither full attack or full defense. So if you have any other idea, pls share it with us, im sure every captain in the world would like to know that.

  • McGorium on November 20, 2012, 19:20 GMT

    [I've disabled facebook's access to external sites so I can't see names of facebook posters. Apologies for not using your names in my replies]: The Ghaziabad example might be flawed because Ranji ticket prices are way lower than test (maybe that's part of the problem). The plain truth of the matter is that test cricket has (and will have) a very small audience compared to ODI's or T20's in India. I suspect (i.e. no empirical data) that a significant proportion of *test* cricket fans are middle-class. Probabilistically, large population centers such as big metros are most likely to have interested audiences in sufficient number to fill a stadium. Mohali or Nagpur simply don't fit that bill; there just isn't enough critical mass. Jharkhand or JK can, and will produce test cricketers. Until it has a sufficiently large test viewership, however, giving them tests is unfair on other venues that patronize it. Perhaps cutting ticket prices might change things; I state this on current status

  • on November 20, 2012, 18:05 GMT

    Well Scratchingtendulkar, I saw the first test at Brisbane between Aus and SA, top two teams in the world and most of the stadium was empty. I saw all the tests when India toured Aus last year and in all the test matches there were hardly 5K-10K people and this is Australia one of the top cricket nation, it might be different in England but that might be just one country, everywhere else test cricket hardly attracts any crowd specially not compared to the sports I mentioned in my post. Further my point was mostly towards - "Diminished Crowds is a world wide problems...", it is not a world wide problem because people come and watch other sports - NFL, Soccer, MLB or NBA.

  • Tlotoxl on November 20, 2012, 15:36 GMT

    Nampally: the problem with Cricket and Test cricket in particular is the chronic lack of willingness to move in to the 20th century let alone the 21st, coming off for "bad light" when there are floodlights on, waiting for hours and hours after it stops raining to start play again, slow over rates, high ticket prices - it is all a toxic mix driving crowd away from the Stadia.

  • Scratchingtendulkar on November 20, 2012, 9:08 GMT

    @Neeraj Khanna. Your statement is wrong, as test cricket crowds are thriving in some countries. In England, most test matches are sold out months in advance (at least forthe first 4 days), particularly when the 'big boys' Australia or South Africa tour. It is the ODI's and meaningless T20's that tend to be easier to buy tickets for.

  • on November 20, 2012, 7:00 GMT

    @Nampally "Diminished Crowds is a world wide problems now due to game being available on TV & poor Marketing of the games." You are absolutely wrong, it is the Test cricket which can't draw people to stadiums, it is not the problem with other sports like NFL, Soccer, Baseball or NBA. Every NFL game is sold out and infact Packers fans are on waiting list for more than 10 years to get a regular price ticket. Baseball teams generally draw 35000 people every day and they play 162 games per season. So it is just Test cricket problem not the world wide problem.

  • on November 20, 2012, 4:02 GMT

    @McGorium,India need not do what Australia and England have done.It's in the interest of Indian cricket to spread test cricket to all parts of the country.We have come a long way since the days of big cities' hegemony o'er the game in India.The game is being played in earnest by boys from Tripura,Jharkhand,J&K and other such states that do not have a long tradition of cricket;on their day they can give the history rich teams a run for their money.While this has happened,in part due to successful commercialization of the game in India,and the ubiquitous cable,some credit must also go to the rotation policy that has seen the game go to different parts of the country,rather than sit in a few old stadiums feeling smug about history. Smaller venues too can bring good crowds;the first round of Ranji games had a match at Ghaziabad being watched by a crowd 15,000 enthusiastic fans;with international sides playing and good facilities one can expect a lot more than 15,000.

  • McGorium on November 20, 2012, 3:01 GMT

    @Avoidingwork:NE monsoon doesn't affect Bombay :) Madras and Blr, you're probably right, especially during December-Feb. I don't know if it's heavy enough in Blr to wash out entire days' worth of play, but fair point. I was generally alluding to this habit of the BCCI of awarding test matches to grounds based on zones rather than public patronage. If winter rains are expected in the south, play games in Calcutta (after the cyclone season), Bombay (Brabourne or Wankhede), or Delhi. It makes no sense playing to empty stadiums in Cuttack, Kanpur, Nagpur, Hyderabad, etc. if people don't show up, and more importantly, people in other places who will show up are being deprived of the opportunity. ODI's and T20's in India almost always play to full houses regardless of where it's being played, so makes sense IMHO to keep tests to venues that patronize them

  • Nampally on November 19, 2012, 19:17 GMT

    @McGorium: You are right in your backing for Test Centres attracting big crowds. At one time Calcutta used to attract routinely a crowd of 90,000. Recent Ahmadabad Test match had very poor crowd from TV pictures. I think it might have been <5,000!. Most of the Stands were empty. Madras (Chennai) as well as Bangalore are great places where Cricket is still popular. Delhi is not a good place for the crowds anymore. Also the gate prices should be reasonable to induce people to go to watch the game along with all other facilities such as clean toilets, cheaply available snacks & transportation to the ground & back. Gate prizes will also be an incentive. Diminished Crowds is a world wide problems now due to game being available on TV & poor Marketing of the games.

  • on November 19, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    Those who are shouting Panesar, he has a terrible record against India and all sub continent teams. He may be little bit better than Samit Patel as bowler - but Samit has an edge in batting. He just got unlucky in both the innings.

  • ProdigyA on November 19, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    satish619 - you say stop the run and attack relentlessly? Contradictions in the same line. If you want to attack all the time you have to set attacking fields which will mean more mean around the bat and thus more scoring opportunities. If you want to stem the flow of run then you need a defensive field. An inside-out feild is neither full attack or full defense. So if you have any other idea, pls share it with us, im sure every captain in the world would like to know that.

  • Percy_Fender on November 19, 2012, 14:32 GMT

    The venues should be the non regular ones and they should have wickets like the one for the Bangalore Test between India and New Zealand recently. Though wickets fell the cricket was much more exciting unlike in the present one where only India could have won. The grounds there will be jam packed on all days of the match. I see no reason why the matches should be only in the regular centres. Places like Dharamshala, Vizag, and Cuttack could be tried out.

  • Avoidingwork on November 19, 2012, 10:54 GMT

    Not much use scheduling a cricket match south of the vindhyas in this season, is it? Can't trust the NE monsoon. They did some years ago, I remember. I think most of the series was a washout. South Africa, was it?

  • Rohan_K on November 19, 2012, 10:44 GMT

    Read full season schedule and then post, Mohali, Delhi, Kanpur and Chennai are to host Australia next year while Bangalore and Hyd have already hosted NZ series. Anyways what is the point in having Test match in Mohali when they dont turn up for IndvsAus, IndvdEng test matches went with only 15 to 20 % attendance. Even ODIs and IPL only attract 75% crowd. Why should BCCI allot? All Indian Test venues are getting Test matches this season so dont crib over Mumbai

  • on November 19, 2012, 10:00 GMT

    Well, over the last few years (obviously due to BCCI issues with the Bengal Board), Eden Gardens has NOT gotten its fair share of cricket matches (let's not forget the World Cup embarrassment, when India's most historic ground received one measly match, and that too an Eng vs/ Zimbabwe one). It's pretty shameful, especially because Eden Gardens is one of the few venues where one can often expect a decent turnout for test matches (plus, the pitch is result-oriented). I hope the recent WI match there and the fact that there is one on this tour is a sign things are changing.

  • on November 19, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    Mr Basu may not be knowing how difficult it is to host a major Test Match in a Venue within a short time when it was not in the original schedule. His allegation that Mumbai get's lion share for matches is also not true. BCCI chooses test venue by rotation so that all venues get fair chace of hosting. However for a Test Match against a team like England a good stadium in a major city is very much needed. I am happy that there is no change in the venue or swapping of stadiums. I am not in Mumbai or belonging to Maharashtra State. I love cricket that's all.

  • on November 19, 2012, 9:05 GMT

    @ Indranil Basu Wankhede and Brabourne together have hosted only 4-5 international games since England played there in 2006. that is nearly 7 years. what are you on about? Mumbai and Kolkata have been equally ignored like you say. It is only the WC match involving India that Kolkata was denid. blame your own state association for that.

  • on November 19, 2012, 8:28 GMT

    Move it to Ranchi. Stadium is waiting for first international match in Ranchi.

  • Rohan_K on November 19, 2012, 8:15 GMT

    @Indranil could you mention test centers which have not got matches recently. Firstly Mumbai does not get any extra Tests its as per rotation policy and most importantly crowds turn up at Wankhede for Test matches,they understand the game and good Test match wickets too unlike some other Test venues.

  • satish619chandar on November 19, 2012, 8:01 GMT

    Does it matter? Both cities were known for producing slow turners. What England want is, get in Panesar and try to choke the run flow with spin at both ends. Attack relentlessly and stop India from scoring big in first innings and then try to make a match out of it.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on November 19, 2012, 7:51 GMT

    Wherever you go, it's the same story - rank turners in Mumbai and Kolkata. Got to feel for the English. I don't think they gave us frank greentops though Lord's was definitely a greentop. It took a certain Dravid to overcome that track. And the English were batting against the bowling of Praveen, Dhoni and the wayward Ishant. No wonder they clobbered our bowlers all over the park.

  • McGorium on November 19, 2012, 7:43 GMT

    To the earlier poster who thought the Bombay game should be moved to other places, that would be a mistake. There are very few test venues in India that sell out, and most of them are south of the vindhyas: Bombay, Bangalore, and Madras. Others in this category are Calcutta, and maybe Delhi. Places like Mohali, Nagpur, Kanpur, etc. are unviable, and make test cricket look bad with empty stands. India should do what Australia or England do: play major test nations in only a fixed set of venues. Places like Darwin or Hobart almost never get an Ashes game. If India wants to take test cricket seriously, it should create a tradition of rewarding venues that support test cricket by giving them more cricket, and not playing them in venues to keep local cricket associations happy

  • on November 19, 2012, 7:33 GMT

    why wudn't u host a test match in mohali.. by far the best indian wicket to play on and on of the better stadiums in india..

  • on November 19, 2012, 7:12 GMT

    It is not going to matter much, ie swapping the Second Cricket Test Venue between Mumbai and Kokatta. These wickets have already been prepared as "Rank Turners" and the Pommies would be licking their wounds yet again!!!!

  • on November 19, 2012, 6:41 GMT

    ahhhh........ they could have moved it to some other city...as it is Kolkata is getting to host the 3rd test and Mumbai will always have the lion's share of the cricket matches.... pathetic !!! Move it to places which are having test status but hardly get to host test matches......

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  • on November 19, 2012, 6:41 GMT

    ahhhh........ they could have moved it to some other city...as it is Kolkata is getting to host the 3rd test and Mumbai will always have the lion's share of the cricket matches.... pathetic !!! Move it to places which are having test status but hardly get to host test matches......

  • on November 19, 2012, 7:12 GMT

    It is not going to matter much, ie swapping the Second Cricket Test Venue between Mumbai and Kokatta. These wickets have already been prepared as "Rank Turners" and the Pommies would be licking their wounds yet again!!!!

  • on November 19, 2012, 7:33 GMT

    why wudn't u host a test match in mohali.. by far the best indian wicket to play on and on of the better stadiums in india..

  • McGorium on November 19, 2012, 7:43 GMT

    To the earlier poster who thought the Bombay game should be moved to other places, that would be a mistake. There are very few test venues in India that sell out, and most of them are south of the vindhyas: Bombay, Bangalore, and Madras. Others in this category are Calcutta, and maybe Delhi. Places like Mohali, Nagpur, Kanpur, etc. are unviable, and make test cricket look bad with empty stands. India should do what Australia or England do: play major test nations in only a fixed set of venues. Places like Darwin or Hobart almost never get an Ashes game. If India wants to take test cricket seriously, it should create a tradition of rewarding venues that support test cricket by giving them more cricket, and not playing them in venues to keep local cricket associations happy

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on November 19, 2012, 7:51 GMT

    Wherever you go, it's the same story - rank turners in Mumbai and Kolkata. Got to feel for the English. I don't think they gave us frank greentops though Lord's was definitely a greentop. It took a certain Dravid to overcome that track. And the English were batting against the bowling of Praveen, Dhoni and the wayward Ishant. No wonder they clobbered our bowlers all over the park.

  • satish619chandar on November 19, 2012, 8:01 GMT

    Does it matter? Both cities were known for producing slow turners. What England want is, get in Panesar and try to choke the run flow with spin at both ends. Attack relentlessly and stop India from scoring big in first innings and then try to make a match out of it.

  • Rohan_K on November 19, 2012, 8:15 GMT

    @Indranil could you mention test centers which have not got matches recently. Firstly Mumbai does not get any extra Tests its as per rotation policy and most importantly crowds turn up at Wankhede for Test matches,they understand the game and good Test match wickets too unlike some other Test venues.

  • on November 19, 2012, 8:28 GMT

    Move it to Ranchi. Stadium is waiting for first international match in Ranchi.

  • on November 19, 2012, 9:05 GMT

    @ Indranil Basu Wankhede and Brabourne together have hosted only 4-5 international games since England played there in 2006. that is nearly 7 years. what are you on about? Mumbai and Kolkata have been equally ignored like you say. It is only the WC match involving India that Kolkata was denid. blame your own state association for that.

  • on November 19, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    Mr Basu may not be knowing how difficult it is to host a major Test Match in a Venue within a short time when it was not in the original schedule. His allegation that Mumbai get's lion share for matches is also not true. BCCI chooses test venue by rotation so that all venues get fair chace of hosting. However for a Test Match against a team like England a good stadium in a major city is very much needed. I am happy that there is no change in the venue or swapping of stadiums. I am not in Mumbai or belonging to Maharashtra State. I love cricket that's all.