Sunday, May 15, 2011


A grassy ground with skyscrapers behind it
Brabourne Stadium, one of the oldestcricket stadiums in the country
Cricket is the most popular sport in the city. Due to a shortage of grounds, various modified versions (generally referred to as gully cricket) are played everywhere. Mumbai is also home to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Indian Premier League (IPL). The Mumbai cricket team represents the city in the Ranji Trophy and has won 39 titles, the most by any team. The city is also represented by the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League.
The city has two international cricket grounds, the Wankhede Stadium and the Brabourne Stadium. The first cricket test match in India was played in Mumbai at Bombay Gymkhana. The biggest cricketing event to be staged in the city so far is the final of the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup which was played at the Wankhede Stadium. Mumbai and London are the only two cities to have hosted both a World Cup final and the final of an ICC Champions Trophy which was played at the Brabourne Stadium in2006. Eminent cricketers from Mumbai include Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar.
Football (soccer) is another popular sport in the city, with the FIFA World Cup and the English Premier League being followed widely. In the I-League (matches in the city are played at the Cooperage Ground), Mumbai is represented by three teams, Mumbai FC, Mahindra United and Air-India. Field hockey has declined in popularity, due to the rise of cricket. Mumbai is home to the Maratha Warriors, the only team from Maharashtra competing in the Premier Hockey League.
Every February, Mumbai holds derby races at the Mahalaxmi Racecourse. Mcdowell's Derby is also held in February at the Turf club in Mumbai. Interest in Formula One racing has been rising in recent years, and in 2008, the Force India F1 team car was unveiled in Mumbai. The city is planning to build its own F1 track and various sites in the city were being chalked out, of which the authorities have planned to zero down on Marve-Malad or Panvel-Kalyan land. If approved, the track will be clubbed with a theme park and will spread over 400 to 500 acres (161.87 to 202.34 ha). In March 2004, the Mumbai Grand Prix was part of the F1 powerboat world championship. In 2004, the annualMumbai Marathon was established in a bid to bring the sports discipline to the Indian public. Mumbai has also played host to the Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open, an International Series tournament of the ATP World Tour, in 2006 and 2007.

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