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UP will soon boast of a modern cricket stadium
An international-standard cricket stadium will come up in Lucknow, courtesy the state government. UPCA Secretary told Merinews that 70 acres of land would be allotted, free of cost. The UP CM announced that a ‘Sports City’ would come up in Noida.
WHETHER IT is the resounding performance of Rudra Pratap Singh, Peush Chawla, Suresh Raina and Mohd Kaif, all U.P players, both in national and international cricket in recent times or chief minister Mayawati’s efforts to boost sports in Uttar Pradesh, the beneficiary is certainly the Uttar Pradesh Cricket Association (UPCA). The latter has been allotted a huge chunk of land in Lucknow for setting up an international cricket stadium.
 
Thus Uttar Pradesh will join the select band of States, which boast of internationally designed cricket stadiums. The stadium will come up under the banner of UPCA. Green Park in Kanpur is under the overall control of the state government. UPCA has been pressing for the erection of such a stadium since the famous K.D. Singh Babu Stadium is not of international standard and thus was not able to host international events. Chief minister Mayawati made the announcement on Monday at Green Park at the conclusion of the one-dayer between India and Pakistan. She also announced that a ‘Sports City’ would be set up in Noida.
 
Speaking to Merinews, P.D. Pathak, the UPCA Secretary (Sports and Administration), said that the international stadium in Lucknow would come up on the Raebareli Road - on the stretch of the by-pass between the Airport and SGPGI, to be exact. Referring to the brief discussion the Hon Secretary of UPCA, Rajiv Shukla, had with the chief minister and the state officials, Pathak said the government had agreed to provide 70 acres of land to the UPCA, free of cost. According to the norms, the BCCI would bear almost half the cost of the Rs.90-crore project, Pathak said, and added the UPCA had sufficient funds to execute the project. It would release Rs.30-40 crores in the first phase. Once the land was formally handed over, the UPCA would proceed with the other formalities, since the blueprint was ready. The stadium would have all the modern amenities and would conform to international specifications and standards.
 
The Mayawati government also announced the institution of ‘Kanshi Ram Khel Ratna Award’. R.P. Singh and Peush Chawla were awarded Rs. 10 lakh and a golden memento, each. Incidentally, Rajiv Shukla, who is also BCCI Vice-President, said the Board was quite satisfied with the new arrangements and facilities at Green Park, where more international cricket events would be scheduled now. He said he would persuade the Board to hold one of the test matches of the forthcoming India-South Africa series at Green Park. He would even try to host one of the 20-20 matches in Green Park, under floodlights.
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