World Cup stadia will be spot on
By Elmo RODRIGOPULLE
Minister of Sports Mahindananda Aluthgamage
COMMENT: The three international cricket stadiums pencilled to hold
the 2011 World Cup 50-over International Cricket Council show-piece in
Sri Lanka will be ready ahead of schedule.
D. Somachandra de Silva - Chairman, Sri Lanka Cricket.
The International stadiums are the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo,
the Sooriyawewa Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium in Hambantota and the
Pallekelle Stadium in Kandy will be dressed-up for the occasion and will
sport picture post card looks.
The first match between Sri Lanka and Canada will be played at
Hambantota on February 20, which will be the curtain raiser game in Sri
Other games are Sri Lanka v Pakistan February 26, March 1 Sri Lanka v
Kenya and Sri Lanka v Australia March 5 all at the R. Premadasa Stadium
in Colombo. The game between Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe on March 10 will be
at the Pallekelle International Stadium. Speaking to the Sunday
Observer, Chairman of Sri Lanka Cricket D. Somachandra de Silva and
Tournament Director ICC Suraj Dandeniya exuded confidence and vowed that
all three Stadiums will be ready and that the ICC need no qualms.
Also partnering De Silva and Dandeniya in seeing that the stadiums
are completed on schedule is Minister of Sports Mahinda Aluthgamage,
three of whom have constantly visited all three stadiums and seen for
themselves the work going on apace. The trio are working as a team and
not letting anything to chance. They constantly keep the sports-loving
President Mahinda Rajapaksa updated and the President who too visits the
stadiums taking time off his busy schedules is a happy and contended
Suraj Dandeniya - Tournament Director, ICC
In fact the President had been highly taken up and amazed with the
work done by De Silva and Dandeniya and thanked them and urged them to
continue the good work.
De Silva and Dandeniya have constantly come in for uncharitable
criticism. But having played the game at the highest levels, they know
how to weave and duck these harmless bouncers and continue the work they
have been entrusted with, because the bottom line for them is proving
their detractors wrong by seeing that the stadiums are ready for play
when 2011 World Cup time comes around.
De Silva and Dandeniya who are gluttons for work have stationed
themselves in Hambantota for the past several days and are personally
supervising the work going on at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium.
The Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium and the
Pallekelle International Stadium are a must for the game. Cricket cannot
be confined to only the metropolis. It has to be diversified and taken
to the villages. In keeping with the Presidentís vision of ĎGamata
cricketí, the above mentioned stadiums will certainly benefit the
cricketers in the Kandy and Hambantota Districts. The Presidentís vision
and mission is to see that sports in the country is second to none. The
Presidentís wish is that Sri Lanka wins the World Cup. Now it is up to
the cricketers who have been the chosen few to deliver and realize the