No more day/night cricket at Dambulla stadium: Aluthgamage

Colombo: The Rangiri Dambulla cricket stadium has not been dropped as an international venue althought it will not host the day/night matches, Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage told parliament on Tuesday.

Responding to an opposition query, Aluthgamage said the stadium in central Sri Lanka would continue to be used in the forthcoming tours by Pakistan and India. The two neighbours are to tour Sri Lanka from May to August.

Aluthgamage said the venue has been excluded from the Twenty20 World Cup to be hosted by Sri Lanka this September.

"The ICC ruled that it cannot be used due to the lack of a training venue within 45 minutes travelling range of the stadium," said Aluthgamage.

He said that Dambulla would no longer be used as a day/night venue. The ground was commissioned in 2001 with the idea of hosting one-day internationals throughout the year including the monsoon season. Dambulla comes in the north central province`s dry zone which traditionally records least annual rainfall.

India, in August 2008, was the last international touring side to play there as the venue was overlooked in preference of the two new stadiums -- the Mahinda Rajapaksa stadium in Hambantota and the Pallekele stadium in Kandy.


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