The first leg of the India-England Test series in Chennai concluded with both teams winning a match each. The stage is now set for a dramatic finale at the new-look Sardar Patel stadium in Motera, Ahmedabad.
The remaining two Tests of the India-England series will take place at the stadium, which is the largest in the world. A spot in the final of the first-ever World Test Championship will be at stake when the two sides meet.
Ahead of the 3rd Test of the India-England series, we take a look at the historic venue.
The Sardar Patel Stadium
The Sardar Patel Stadium, also referred to as Motera Stadium, is the world's largest cricketing stadium with a seating capacity of 1,10,000. Following the COVID-19 restrictions, 55,000 tickets are available for sale for the two upcoming Tests between India and England.
The stadium has undergone large-scale renovations in recent times. It is spread over an area of 63 acres and has 11 center pitches. In addition to outdoor pitches, the stadium also has six indoor pitches and two practice grounds with a small pavilion area. The stadium has four dressing rooms with a gymnasium each.
LED floodlights were also recently installed at the ground to facilitate day-night matches, starting with the third Test of the India-England series. The stadium also has a state-of-the-art drainage facility, which enables water to drain quickly, reducing the time wasted games in the event of light rains.
Team India's record at Motera
The Indian cricket team has played 12 test matches in total at the Motera, winning 4, losing 2 and drawing 6. Their last match at the stadium was against England in 2012, where the Indian team triumphed by 9 wickets. It was also the venue for India's quarter-final win over Australia in the 2011 World Cup.
The ground has also witnessed many other historic moments, including Sunil Gavaskar reaching 10,000 Test runs and Kapil Dev's 9-wicket haul. Kapil Devis also claimed his 432nd victim to go past Richard Hadlee as Test cricket's leading wicket-taker at the Motera.
How Team India can qualify for the WTC finals
The India-England series will impact which team plays New Zealand in the inaugural WTC finals. It is a tight contest where three teams - India, Australia and England - all have a chance of qualifying for the finals.
- If India manages to win the series 2-1 or 3-1, they will qualify for the finals.
- If England wins 3-1 in this India-England series, they will qualify for the WTC finals.
- If England wins the series 2-1 or the series is drawn, Australia qualifies for the finals.
The stage is set for a tense finale in which neither team can afford to slip up. It will be intriguing to see which side prevails in the India-England series and enters the finals of the inaugural World Test Championship.