Indian cricket captain, Rohit Sharma, has expressed concerns about the poor condition of the Dharamsala stadium, calling it “unacceptable” and urging players to exercise caution while fielding in the deep. The comments came ahead of the third Test match against South Africa, which began on Saturday.
Sharma’s remarks were prompted by a series of injuries sustained by players during practice sessions, including a nasty fall suffered by fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah. The incidents have raised questions about the quality of the outfield, which appears to be uneven and prone to divots.
“The conditions here are quite challenging,” Sharma said during a pre-match press conference. “We’ve seen a few injuries already, and we don’t want anyone else getting hurt. It’s important for us to be mindful of the risks and take necessary precautions.”
The Indian skipper’s criticism echoes similar sentiments voiced by other players and coaches in recent months. Last year, Australian cricketer Steve Smith described the Dharamsala surface as “dangerous,” while former Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar called for improvements to the stadium’s drainage system.
Despite these concerns, local authorities have yet to address the issues adequately. Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association secretary, Sanjay Chauhan, insisted that the venue met international standards but admitted that maintenance had been neglected due to financial constraints.
The controversy surrounding the Dharamsala stadium highlights broader concerns about sports infrastructure in India. While the country boasts some state-of-the-art facilities, many others remain subpar, posing safety risks to athletes and spectators alike.
In light of these developments, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) would do well to reassess its priorities and invest more resources into upgrading existing facilities. Doing so would not only ensure player safety but also enhance the overall fan experience and promote the growth of cricket in the region.
Ultimately, the responsibility falls on administrators and policymakers to provide safe and suitable environments for sportspersons to excel. By taking proactive steps towards improving infrastructure, they can help prevent avoidable accidents and foster a culture of excellence that benefits everyone involved.
As the third Test match between India and South Africa continues, fans will hope that the focus remains on the action rather than off-field controversies. However, until tangible progress is made, questions around the Dharamsala stadium’s suitability will linger, casting a shadow over the beauty and excitement of the game.