WC warm up games venues changed
Sri Lanka’s opening 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup warm up match against
Netherlands has been shifted to Colombo due to persistent heavy rain in
Kandy, it was confirmed yesterday.
The match was scheduled to be played at the reconstructed Pallekele
International Stadium on February 12. ICC Tournament Director for Sri
Lanka Suraj Dandeniya stated that their intention was to play the match
at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Sooriyawewa,
But as the weather conditions has not yet improved in that area as
well the second option was to shift the match to Colombo and it will now
be played at the SSC ground in Maitland Place.
Sri Lanka’s second warm up match will be against the West Indies on
February 15 at the R Premadasa Stadium. Netherlands and the West Indies
are drawn in group ‘B’ for the World Cup along with India, South Africa,
Bangladesh, England and Ireland.
Altogether Sri Lanka will host four World Cup warm-up matches
involving Kenya, West Indies and the Netherlands.
The decision to shift the matches to Colombo was taken by the local
and ICC officials following a recommendation by the ICC pitch consultant
Andy Atkinson after he inspected the venue on Wednesday.
However this will not affect the three tournament fixtures scheduled
to take place at this venue in March.
Pallekele will host three matches in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011
starting with the clash between New Zealand and Pakistan on March 8,
followed by Sri Lanka’s match against Zimbabwe on March 10 and
concluding with the Pakistan v Zimbabwe fixture on March 12.
Tournament Director Prof. Ratnakar Shetty said: “The groundstaff at
Pallekele have had to contend with an extremely high volume of rainfall
over a number of weeks, far in excess of what is normal for this time of
This has proved to be a significant handicap in their efforts to
produce pitches for the forthcoming warm-up matches.
“The decision to switch the warm-up matches away from Pallekele is
common sense and is one that is fully supported by all stakeholders as
it will allow the ground staff the time they need, following those
recent heavy rains, to produce excellent pitches for the tournament
matches that will take place there.
“At the same time, the switch will also ensure that the teams
involved in the warm-up matches get a high level of quality preparation
ahead of tournament matches.”
[ The 2011 ICC World Cup warm up fixtures]
February 12: Kenya v West Indies at R. Premadasa Stadium
February 12: Bangladesh v Canada at Chittagong
February 12: South Africa v Zimbabwe at Chennai
February 12: Sri Lanka v Netherlands at SSC ground
February 12: Ireland v New Zealand at Nagpur
February 13: India v Australia at Bangalore
February 15: Ireland v Zimbabwe at Nagpur
February 15: Bangladesh v Pakistan at Mirpur
February 15: Australia v South Africa at Bangalore
February 15: Kenya v Netherlands at SSC ground
February 16: Canada v England at Dhaka
February 16: Sri Lanka v West Indies at R. Premadasa Stadium
February 16: India v New Zealand at Chennai
February 18: England v Pakistan at Dhaka.