Being the second-largest cricket stadium in the world and the largest in India, Eden Gardens has been one of the premium venues for India © Getty Images
Being the second-largest cricket stadium in the world and the largest in India, Eden Gardens has been one of the premium venues for India © Getty Images

India began its long home season with the first Test against New Zealand at Kanpur, which was quite eventful as it was also their 500th Test. The home season will continue with another exciting match against visiting New Zealand at the iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata as it will be India’s 250th Test at home. It has been a long journey, which has spanned for 83-years for India ever since they played their first Test at home back in 1933. Playing at home is always an advantage for any side and for India it was certainly a huge motivation. The home crowd cheered them well has a major contribution towards their prosperity. On the occasion of India’s 250th home Test, let us take you through nation’s top five grounds from different cities.

1. Mumbai Grounds (Gymkhana Ground, Brabourne Stadium and Wankhede Stadium)

Gymkhana ground is the one where it all started in 1933 and that was the only Test match played at this venue, which India lost by 9 wickets against England. The second big Test venue of Mumbai is Brabourne Stadium, which hosted its first Test in 1937 and last one in 2009. In the previous century, this ground was famous for the rivalry between Vijay Merchant and Vijay Hazare but in this century, people will remember this venue for Virender Sehwag’s epic knock of 293-run. Had Sehwag scored his third triple-ton in Tests then this venue would have surely mentioned in the most iconic venues of the nation. India played a total of 18 Test in which they won 5, lost 2 and drew 11.

The third ground of Mumbai — Wankhede Stadium, which is probably the most famous, ground in the nation currently. This venue will be remembered as the great Sachin Tendulkar’s home ground. Well, there have been plenty of memorable knocks and spells witnessed at this venue and one of them is Clive Lloyd’s unbeaten 242, Sunil Gavaskar’s 205, Vinod Kambli’s first of consecutive double ton against England, etc. India has played 24 Tests here, out of which they won 10, lost 7 and drew 7. After combining all the matches hosted by this city including these three grounds, then Mumbai will be seen as the city which has hosted and where India has won most Tests. A total number of 43 Tests has been hosted by Mumbai and India won 15 out of them, lost 10 and drew 18. PREVIEW: India vs New Zealand, 2nd Test at Kolkata.

2. Feroz Shah Kotla — Delhi

The capital city of India has been a matter of controversies in last one decade when it comes to cricket and the state board will remain famous for only one reason — Anil Kumble’s 10-wicket haul against Pakistan in 1999. Established in 1883, Kotla hosted its first Test for India in 1948 which was played against West Indies and saw four centuries from Caribbean batsmen but Hemu Adhikari’s heroic 114-run knock helped hosts in saving the match. India played its last Test at this venue against South Africa where Ajinkya Rahane scored hundreds in both the innings and in the fourth innings; a show of immense resistance was displayed by the Proteas batsmen. Although, India won that match by 337 runs, which was also their 13th victory from 33 Tests at this venue. So far, India lost only 6 matches with 14 draws at this ground.

3. MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chepauk — Chennai

MA Chidambaram Stadium is known for its sporting pitches and energetic crowd over the years. This ground is basically famous for hosting the tied Test between India and Australia in 1986 and also notably popular for some records galore because Gavaskar broke Don Bradman’s record of 29 centuries by scoring his 30th one at this venue. Not only for batting, but also known for some bowling records as Narendra Hirwani registered his career best figures on debut by scalping 16 wickets, a record yet to be broken. Since this venue is also famous for its sporting crowd, one should not forget the Test between India and Pakistan in 1999, where visiting side won the match and were appreciated by the entire crowd during their lap of honour. Like Kotla, India have won 13 Tests but from 31 matches with 6 losses, 1 tie and 11 draw.

4. Eden Gardens — Kolkata

Eden Gardens holds the tag of most popular ground and a bit controversial as well for India. It was this ground which provided India’s first drawn Test against Douglas Jardine-led England side in the 1933/44 tour. The crowd of this venue is said to be most vocal and passionate about the game, which at times has led to riots as well. The first riot was witnessed during the second Test against West Indies in 1966/67 because the Police had taken the baton charge on the spectators who were sitting on grass around the boundaries after the authorities had sold out more tickets than the seats were actually available, which led to no play on Day 2. The next riot took place during fourth Test against Australia in 1969.

Beside all those controversies, Eden Gardens remains one of the favourite venues for India because of some memorable victory, especially the second Test against Australia in 2001, in which VVS Laxman scored 281 along with Rahul Dravid’s 180. These knocks helped India win the match after following on. India last played at Eden Gardens in 2013 against West Indies, where Rohit Sharma scored his career best 177 runs, which was also his debut Test. It’s been almost two years since then and India will back at this iconic venue to play its 250th Test at home with Kapil Dev set to ring the bell there for the first time. Overall, India has played 39 Tests at this venue, which is the most number of matches hosted by any ground in India. They won 11 from it, lost 9 and drew 19 so far.

5. Green Park Stadium — Kanpur

Famous for its pollution, though named Green Park Stadium and situated close to the holy river Ganges, Kanpur does not have that many historical moments as compared to the above four venues. But it became iconic when India played its 500th Test here and clinched a scintillating victory against New Zealand in their landmark Test. One of the most memorable things from this ground is Mohammad Azharuddin’s last of three consecutive centuries during his sensational debut. India made its Test debut at this ground back in 1952 against England, which they lost by eight wickets but their overall record is better. So far, India has played 22 Tests in Kanpur, out of which they won seven, lost three and drew.

(Abhishek Kumar is a cricket devotee currently staffing with He can be followed on Twitter @abhik2593 and on Facebook at abhicricket.kumar)