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Melbourne Cricket Ground - fascinating history and cricketing folklore

Sat, Mar 28, 2015, 06:48 PM
Kolkata, March 28: The Melbourne Cricket Ground's (MCG) hallowed surface will add another feather to its cap when it hosts the final of the 11th World Cup between tournament co-hosts Australia and New Zealand on Sunday.

The ground will be the second venue to host the Cup final more than once after another iconic cricket ground - the Lord's in England - hosted four final matches. The MCG has previously hosted the 1992 final where Pakistan beat England by 22 runs.

The ground, one of the oldest in Australia, has a fascinating history.

It began way back on November 15, 1838, when a handful of men decided to form a cricket club, and thus the Melbourne Cricket Club was established.

Eventually, in 1853 the club's greatest achievement - the MCG - was built.

The stadium hosted the first match in 1856 between Victoria and New South Wales, followed by a match against English XI in 1862 and of course the first Test between Australia and England in 1877.

The venue boasts of a total capacity of 1,00,024.

The venue has witnessed and felt the presence of cricketing legends including Warwick Armstrong, Donald Bradman, Bill Woodfull, Leonard Hutton, Garfield Sobers, Wilfred Rhodes Dennis Lillee, Steve Waugh, Shane Warne, Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar.

The most notable record achieved at the ground came when the first day of the Boxing Day Test attracted 91,112, the biggest recorded crowd for a day of Test cricket.

Bowlers too proved their worth here. Pakistan's Sarfraz Nawaz captured a memorable 7-1 to steal victory in 1978-79, finishing with second innings figures of 9-86.

Also former India leg spinner Bhagwat Chandrasekhar captured 6-52 in each innings of the 1977-78 series for match winning figures of 12-104. These figures are no less than outstanding.

Keeping in mind the history, drama and emotions that are attached to the historic venue, the Cup final match on Sunday will bring about a blockbuster end to the mega event.
Agency: IANS

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