A capsule look at venues for the 2015 Cricket World Cup
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — AUSTRALIA
The Gabba (Brisbane)
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stage: Australia vs. Bangladesh (Feb. 21), Ireland vs. United Arab Emirates (Feb. 25), Pakistan vs. Zimbabwe (March 1).
About the venue: The Brisbane Cricket Ground, known as The Gabba for its location in the Brisbane suburb of Woollongabba, has been hosting cricket matches since 1896. The ground first began to host first-class cricket matches in 1931, with its first test between Australia and South Africa later that year. It was the site, in December 1960, of cricket’s first tied test between Australia and the West Indies. Renowned for its bounce and carry, is regularly home to Australia’s test season opener.
Sydney Cricket Ground
World Cup 2015 matches: Semifinal (March 26). Quarterfinal (March 18). Group stage: South Africa vs. West Indies (Feb. 27), Australia vs. Sri Lanka (March 8), England vs. Afghanistan (March 13).
About the venue: The SCG was developed on the site of the Garrison Ground, later the Civil and Military Ground, which was a part of Sydney Common allocated to the British Army. The current ground was developed from 1875 by the New South Wales state government in association with the NSW Cricket Association, when it was known as the Association Ground. The SCG hosted its first first-class game in 1878 and its first cricket test between Australia and England in 1882. One of the more spin-friendly wickets in Australia.
Manuka Oval (Canberra)
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stages: Bangladesh vs. Afghanistan (Feb. 18), West Indies vs. Zimbabwe (Feb. 24), South Africa vs. Ireland (March 3).
About the venue: The Manuka Oval, situated in the suburb of Griffith not far from the CBD, was developed in the 1920s when the former Manuka Circle Park was enclosed. The Bradman Pavilion, named for the great Donald Bradman, was built in 1962. The ground boasts the Robert Menzies and Bob Hawke grandstands, named for former Prime Ministers. The ground annually hosts matches between a Prime Minister’s XI and touring international teams.
Melbourne Cricket Ground
World Cup 2015 matches: Final (March 29). Quarterfinals (March 19). Group stages: England vs. Australia (Feb. 14), South Africa vs. India (Feb. 22), Sri Lanka vs. Bangladesh (Feb. 26),
About the venue: The MCG is Australia’s most iconic sporting stadium and the venue of some of its most historic sporting events. With a capacity of more than 100,000 it is the largest in the southern hemisphere and the largest to regularly host international cricket. It hosted the very first test match, between Australia and England in March, 1877, and was also the central stadium of the 1956 Summer Olympics, the 2006 Commonwealth Games and the 1992 Cricket World Cup.
World Cup 2015 matches: Quarterfinal (March 20). Group stages: India vs. Pakistan (Feb. 15), England vs. Bangladesh (March 9), Pakistan vs. Ireland (March 15).
About the venue: Universally hailed as one of the world’s most attractive cricket grounds, the Adelaide Oval stands in leafy parkland near the Torrens River, only a short walk from central Adelaide. Cricket has been played at the ground since 1871 and it has also recently hosted Australian Rules Football, soccer, rugby league and rugby union. The ground was redeveloped from 2008 at a cost of $575 million.
WACA Ground (Perth)
World Cup 2015 matches: India vs. United Arab Emirates (Feb. 28), Australia vs. Afghanistan (March 4), India vs. West Indies (March 6).
About the venue: The WACA, named for the Western Australia Cricket Association which has a 999-year lease on the ground, has been the home of cricket in Western Australia since 1893, famed for its fast and bouncy pitches
The ground has hosted test matches since 1970 and four of the eight fastest centuries in test history have been scored there. ′
Bellerive Oval (Hobart)=
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stages: Zimbabwe vs. Ireland (March 7), Sri Lanka vs. Scotland (March 11), Australia vs. Scotland (March 14).
About the venue: The picturesque Bellerive Oval is located on the eastern shore of the Tasmania state capital, Hobart. The ground became a first-class cricket venue when Tasmania was admitted to the Sheffield Shield inter-state competition in 1977. It hosted its first one-day international, between Sri Lanka and New Zealand, in 1988 and its first test in 1989.
Eden Park (Auckland)
World Cup 2015 matches: Semifinals (March 24). Group stages: Australia vs. New Zealand (Feb. 28), South Africa vs. Pakistan (March 7), India vs. Zimbabwe (March 14),
About the venue: New Zealand’s premier sports venue which hosted the final of the 1987 and 2011 Rugby World Cups and the semifinal of the 1992 Cricket World Cup between New Zealand and Pakistan. It was also the central venue of the 1950 British Empire Games and site of New Zealand’s first test cricket win, over the West Indies in 1956. The ground is named for nearby Mount Eden, a dormant volcano.
Seddon Park (Hamilton)
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stages: South Africa vs. Zimbabwe (Feb. 15), India vs. Ireland (March 10), Bangladesh vs. New Zealand (March 13).
About the venue: Seddon Park is a purpose-built cricket venue situated in New Zealand’s fourth-largest city. It has a village green atmosphere, a perfectly round playing area containing a block with nine pitches, surrounded by grassy embankments. Floodlighting was installed in 1999. The ground is named for former New Zealand Prime Minister Richard John Seddon. It first hosted a test match in 1991.
McLean Park (Napier)
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stages: Pakistan vs. United Arab Emirates (March 4), New Zealand vs. Afghanistan (March 8), West Indies vs. United Arab Emirates (March 15).
About the venue: A multi-purpose venue which hosts both cricket and rugby as the home of the Central Districts Cricket Association and Hawke’s Bay Rugby Union. The ground hosted its first test, between New Zealand and Pakistan, in 1979, and its first one-day international, between New Zealand and Sri Lanka, in 1982. McLean Park is renowned as one of the best batting pitches in New Zealand.
Wellington Regional Stadium
World Cup 2015 matches: Quarterfinals (March 21). Group stages: England vs. New Zealand (Feb. 20), England vs. Sri Lanka (March 1), South Africa vs. United Arab Emirates (March 12).
About the venue: Constructed in 2000 amid some local controversy, the Wellington Regional Stadium or Westpac Stadium became Wellington’s test rugby venue, replacing Athletic Park. Whilst it hosts one-day internationals, cricket test matches are still played at the Basin Reserve. The stadium, known as the “cake tin” for its circular construction, stands in rail yards close to the Wellington waterfront.
Saxton Oval (Nelson)
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stages: West Indies vs. Ireland (Feb. 16), Zimbabwe vs. United Arab Emirates (Feb. 19), Bangladesh vs. Scotland (March 5).
About the venue: The ground was constructed by the Nelson Cricket Association which moved from its previous home at Trafalgar Park in 2009. It hosted its first List A and first-class matches in 2011 after a women’s T20 international between New Zealand and England in 2010. The first one-day international, between New Zealand and the West Indies, was played there in 2014.
Hagley Oval (Christchurch)
World Cup 2015 matches: First match: New Zealand vs. Sri Lanka (Feb. 14). Group stages: Pakistan vs. West Indies (Feb. 21), England vs. Scotland (Feb 23).
About the venue: Hagley Oval, in the center of the large, grassy and tree-lined Hagley Park on the banks of the Avon River, hosted its first recorded cricket match in 1867. A first-class match was played there for the first time in 1907 and representative cricket returned there intermittently until 1994. But the ground gained its second lease on life when it was redeveloped as Christchurch’s main cricket venue after the devastating 2011 earthquake in which 185 people died. It hosted its first one-day international, between Canada and Scotland, in 2014 and its first test, between New Zealand and Sri Lanka, later that year.
University Oval (Dunedin)
World Cup 2015 matches: Group stages: New Zealand vs. Scotland (Feb. 17), Sri Lanka vs. Afghanistan (Feb. 22), Afghanistan vs. Scotland (Feb. 26).
About the venue: The University Oval, previously known as Logan Park, was owned by the University of Otago until it was transferred to the Dunedin City Council after its renovation in the early 2000s. It stands in leafy parkland in the north of Dunedin, near the university campus, and is home to the Otago Cricket Association and the Otago University Rugby Club. Dunedin was settled by Scottish migrants and is known as the Edinburgh of the South, hence Scotland’s two matches at the venue.