The Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium or the Mohali Stadium is one of the foremost names amongst cricket grounds in India. It is located at Sector 63, SAS Nagar in Mohali, near Chandigarh.
The stadium has an official capacity of 26,458 and boasts sporting wickets, lush green outfield, spacious dressing rooms, excellent practice-facilities and state-of-the-art gymnasium which have been praised by players and coaches.
What makes the stadium look apart from other cricket stadiums in the world is the unusually high number of floodlights. The stadium has a total of 16 floodlights, placed at a lower height than the other stadiums. This is because of the closeness of the Chandigarh airport, and such measures had to be taken to prevent aircraft colliding from the floodlight pillars.
The stadium was constructed and completed in 1992, before which the land was largely a ravine area. The designing of the stadium was done by Arun Loomba and Associates while the construction was done by the local company, R. S. Construction. The entire project cost was 250 million Indian rupees.
The first ODI match to be played here was between India and South Africa on 22nd November 1993, while the first Test match was played a year later on 10th December 1994 between India and West Indies.
The World Cup semi-final of 1996 between Australia and West Indies is definitely one of the many unforgettable matches ever to be played which saw Australia just about win against the West Indians as the fast pitch helped pace bowlers leaps and bounds.
The 1996 Titan Cup encounter between Australia and India was another thriller that the ground hosted. With Tendulkar as captain, the Indians put up a target of 289. A stellar bowling performance from Anil Kumble, helped India win the match by just 5 runs.
However, the World Cup semi-final between India and Pakistan in 2011 is best remembered by the Indian cricket fans, as the India won the match by 29 runs. The match carried even more importance as it was attended by the Prime Ministers of both the nations as a gesture of cricket diplomacy for normalizing relations.
In September 2003, there was fire at the Mohali stadium. A new giant video screen was being installed at the stadium while the old one was being discarded, when sparks from the welding of frames flew onto the old scoreboard, which caught fire.
No one was hurt in the incident, and interestingly a cricket match was being played at the very moment the fire happened, but none of the players noticed it until security personnel rushed to the scene.
In recent days, the pitch has slowed down quite a bit while the outfield remains lightning quick because of its lush green conditions, making it a dreamland for batsmen. There have been numerous instances when total of more than 180 runs have been chased successfully in Twenty20 games.
The last match played at the stadium was the ODI between Sri Lanka and India, in the former’s tour of India, on 13th December 2017.