Railway stadium to host the Orissa-Punjab Ranji match

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Bhubaneswar, Nov 18 (UNI) The Ranji Trophy Elite group ''A'' match between Orissa and Punjab will be played at the newly constructed Railway stadium here from November 23 to 26.

East Coast Railway Sports Association president Dillip Samantaray told newspersons here that former Coach of Sri Lankan Cricket team and Junior Indian cricket team coach David Whatmore had already inspected the pitch.

''He also appreciated it,'' Mr Samantaray said adding four grass turf pitches were made with soil brought from Amalpuram in Andhra Pradesh, while two practice pitches were also provided.

The pitches were made under the guidance of the BCCI Curator Viswanathan and Bermuda grass had been laid on the ground, as per international stadard, according to him.

The outfield had been prepared in accordance with the specifications made by the BCCI, he informed.

Mr Samantaray said the stadium was the biggest in eastern India with a radius of about 81 metres.

The first phase of the cricket stadium was completed with an estimated cost of about Rs two crore, while the construction of pavillion and dressing rooms would entail Rs 3.5 crore during the second phase.

Orissa Cricket Association had sanctioned Rs one crore for the development of cricket facilities in the stadium and the amount was expected to be released shortly, he said.

The railway had also requested the BCCI for an ''infrastrcture grant'' for the construction of the new stadium.

''On receipt of the grant, more number of galleries would be constructed,'' Mr Samantaray said.

UNI BD SB RKM KN2043

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