World Twenty20 Australia New Zealand Match Will Happen At Dharamsala, The World's Most Beautiful Cricket Ground

14/03/2016 2:50 PM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST
Wikimedia Commons

Lords? Steeped in history but stodgy. The MCG? Unparalleled atmosphere but lacking in architectural charm. The SCG? A gem but it's still no Dharamsala.


The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium in Dharamsala, India, that's what. This, ladies and gentleman, is what you call a beautiful cricket ground. It also happens to be where Australia takes on New Zealand this coming Friday in its first match of the World Twenty20.

It's not just us saying this ground is beautiful. It's pretty much every cricket fan on social media this week.

Like this guy.

And this guy.

And this enthusiast.

And this one.

You get the idea.

Feel like some words to accompany the pictures? Here is the world's leading cricket website waxing lyrical like Wordsworth:

"Stunning. Breathtaking. Awesome. The adjectives roll out as one enters the most beautiful ground in India... A small and glittering green plate, the ground has a snow-capped background in the form of the Dauladhar hill-range. The mountains add to the serenity of the venue, which lies at an altitude of 1317 metres above sea level.

Getting to Dharamsala, however, is difficult. The terrain is hilly and the nearest airport is in Chandigarh, 250 kilometres away by road. The harsh winters, during which it rains and snows, are also deterrents to organising international matches.."

Dharamsala is a city of just 50,000 people in far northern India, best known as the Dalai Lama's residence and the HQ of the Tibetan government in exile.

The city is quite near Kashmir, a disputed territory which India and Pakistan have fought over for years. Cricket's governing body, the ICC, scheduled the World Twenty20 clash between India and Pakistan for Dharamsala on March 19, the day after the Australia/New Zealand match. But Pakistan raised security concerns and the game has now been moved to Kolkata.

The weather in Dharamsala can be a little, let's say, changeable.

But the average maximum temperature for March is 21 degrees so hopefully this Friday's match will go ahead without a hutch. Which is both a home for a rabbit and how New Zealanders pronounce the word hitch.

Interestingly, it was the Sri Lankan-born former Australian Test cricketer Dav Whatmore who first suggested the ground could host international cricket, while working as a coach in India. His dream became a reality in 2013 when India and England played a One Day International. But this will be the first time Australia or New Zealand has played international cricket there. Enjoy.

dharamsala cricket

More On This Topic