24 September, 2014 / Ziqa'ad 28, 1435

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-Photo by AFP

KOLKATA: A little over a year ago, former England captain Tony Greig had called the Eden Gardens ‘a morgue’ after a handful of spectators turned up for an India-West Indies Test. Alas! If only the cricketer had lived a few more days, he would have felt better.

For less than a week after the demise of the popular commentator, the iconic ground is all set to abuzz with a capacity crowd cheering arch-rivals India and Pakistan in the One-day International on Thursday.

The stadium’s custodian Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) has announced a sell-out crowd.

“All the tickets have been sold out. It will be a sell-out crowd,” said CAB treasurer Biswarup Dey.

On the flip side though, only 3,500 tickets were made available for general spectators. Also, for the first time for an international match at the Eden, tickets for general spectators were sold only online.

With access to the internet perhaps a difficult proposition for ordinary cricket fans, beneficiaries are likely to be the net savvy urban population.

The rest of the tickets were set aside as complimentary or sold to CAB-affiliated clubs.

The hallowed ground, known for its boisterous and sporting crowd, had been low on the decibel count in the recent past causing concern among many former cricket greats.

The sight of just 1,000 spectators at a stadium with a capacity of 65,000 during an India-West Indies Test in November 2011 had prompted the celebrated Greig to call it a place for the dead. “The Eden Gardens was one of my favourite grounds because of its wonderful atmosphere. Today, it looks and sounds like a morgue,” tweeted Greig.

The stadium set up in 1864 could host around 1,00,000 spectators before it was renovated ahead of last year’s World Cup. Now its capacity is 66,000.

As India come to the ground down 0-1 in the series, a packed Eden would expect the hosts to create history by winning their first ODI against Pakistan on this ground and square the three-match series.

The hosts have lost all three ODIs that they have played against Pakistan earlier here.—Agencies


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Comments (8) (Closed)


ammariftikhar
Jan 02, 2013 03:34pm
additionally when Pakistan takes wicket or at good fielding by Pakistani! Just tells the caliber of the Hindustanis
Mandeep
Jan 02, 2013 03:52pm
How many demands you got from India ?
Ali Shah
Jan 02, 2013 10:46am
Why did they cut down the capacity of Eden Gardens from 100K to 66K?
ammariftikhar
Jan 02, 2013 03:29pm
"Kolkata ODI sold out, says CAB official" We got the 'Passive' news: Kolkata ODI is sold out - i.e. not to crowd!
pratik
Jan 02, 2013 03:31am
Well my prediction is Pakistan will win the series by 2-1 or even 3-0 . Because Indian Team has lost their work ethic which was during Garry Kristen . They are a just bunch of lackadaisical who don't even bother to do hard practice . Actuly its a big series for Pakistan , its mean a lot for them but not for Indian team . they are treating it as just a burden , although they will get their cut from all add companies .It's not Indian cricket team its a TEAM IPL . I love the way Pakistani team is doing right now . All the very best Pakistan because I will praise the team who working hard on the ground , whatever the side . Go Pakistan n all the best Team lackluster ( India ) .
Saeed Masood
Jan 02, 2013 10:26am
The Indian crowd needs to learn to cheer the opponent teams also...with sold out stadiums of 65000 dead silence on a Pakistani six or a four is shame for the Indians.
noor
Jan 03, 2013 12:26am
i think the crowd in 1st ODI was less patisan and more supporting than the two T20s
Mohammad Irfan (Kashmir ,INDIA)
Jan 03, 2013 02:49am
Pakistan can't win the remaining two!!!!