The Web


World Cup 2003
Match Reports
Graphical Analysis
WC Format
Fantasy Cricket
Discussion Groups

Home > Cricket > World Cup 2003 > News > Report

Empty seats at Sachin's show

Our Correspondent in Mumbai | March 06, 2003 12:53 IST

Sounds unbelievable but it's true: only 70,005 spectators have watched India's remarkable progress through to the Super Six of the World Cup.

That's less than the official capacity of Eden Gardens!

Overall, as many as 19 per cent of the seats have gone unoccupied at stadiums where Sachin Tendulkar has been unleashing his breathtaking fireworks.

Not even the prospect of a tight contest against Australia, Pakistan and England could set the turnstiles swinging, figures released by the International Cricket Council show.

The SuperSport Park at the Centurion, which hosted India's champagne encounters against Australia and Pakistan, has a capacity of 21,156 seats. Shocking as it may seem, both matches were seen by a below-capacity crowd. There were 17,694 spectators for the Australia match, and 19,679 for the Pakistan match.

The India-England match at the Kingsmead in Durban, which has a capacity of 20,110 seats, was watched by 18,353 spectators.

Of the other matches, the lesser said, the better.

India's match against Holland at Paarl was watched by 3,674 spectators (capacity 9,014 seats); against Namibia at Pietermaritzburg by 4,805 (capacity 7,088 seats); and against Zimbabwe at Harare by 5,800 (capacity 7,329 seats).

In all, 70,005 people have watched India's six preliminary matches against a full capacity of 85,840. That's a full 19 per cent of seats going unoccupied.

Considering that so many of those on view at Indian matches have been Indians, the official figures only demonstrate a marked disinterest towards the game among the hosts for matches not featuring the home team.

However, it must be admitted that many of the seats have been bought whole-sale by corporates, many of whom skip and see matches as they please.

In spite of an appeal from the World Cup organisers, the corporates have refused to part with the tickets for matches they do not wish to watch.

Will the Super Six put more bums on seats? Watch this space.

South Africa's matches against New Zealand, Sri Lanka and West Indies all attracted full houses. The opening ceremony drew in more spectators than the stadium could accommodate.

Share your comments

 What do you think about the story?

Read what others have to say:

Number of User Comments: 46

Sub: Empty Seats at Sachin Show

Well, it just goes on to show that we Indians are the best sportsmen of all. Afterall, we watch even matches where our team is ...

Posted by Sonia Francis

Sub: Host the game in India

This report just goes to show that the event better be held in cricket loving countries like India. The organisers can expect full stands in ...

Posted by Lekhak


com'on rediff. did u count the crowd for the crucial group B match between sri & wi ?compared to that indians have had a good ...

Posted by sam

Sub: what a concern

why doesn't rediff buy rest of tickets and distribute them free....

Posted by shrikant

Sub: Silly Headline!

Hey Rediff! What happens to you sometimes? You have given a very silly headline for this. SA is no India even if there is huge ...

Posted by Ramesh Sistla


Article Tools

Email this Article

Printer-Friendly Format

Letter to the Editor

Copyright © 2003 rediff.com India Limited. All Rights Reserved.