Saurashtra Cricket Association is planning to become the first state association in India to have a cricket ground with a roof to avoid matches being washed out due to unseasonal rains, daily Mid-Day reported on Friday.
Earlier this month, the T20 international between India and Sri Lanka in Guwahati was washed out due to unexpected showers and many more domestic matches have met the same fate in the last few years.
SCA president Jaydev Shah confirmed the details to the newspaper saying they were in talks with a French company to study the feasibility of the project and a final decision could be taken soon.
“Since the monsoons here are very unpredictable, we have seen a lot of matches — domestic and international — getting washed out. So, we had a look at the various kinds of roofs we can go in for. One is a retractable one [like the one at Wimbledon] and the other is a permanent roof, resembling a dome. We are working on the feasibility of both.
“It’s not that we want a roof just for the sake of it or to be different from others. This will be a very carefully taken decision as the cost involved is huge. We must also take into account hosting maximum number of international matches here to make it a feasible investment. Then there are various factors like the placement of floodlights, etc that need to be considered as well. It’s a French company that we are in talks with,” the former first-class player and captain of Saurashtra Ranji trophy team was quoted as saying.
Shah said the association had also purchased a 17-acre plot adjoining the SCA Stadium in Khanderi, which will host the second one-day international between India and Australia on Friday, where they would build a multi-purpose stadium and the roof could come up on any of the two structures.
“As an experiment, we will first try and build a dome roof over the 25 practice pitches [located behind the main ground]. We have to also consider how the pitch and grass would behave in the absence of direct sunlight,” Shah added.