Polonnaruwa Cricket Stadium further delayed

By Maheesha Mudugamuwa
The construction of the National Cricket Stadium in Hingurakgoda, Polonnaruwa, which began in February last year after facing delays for several years since the project was announced, is yet to be completed by Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC).

SLC member Sujeewa Weraliyadda told The Sunday Morning that the opening of the ground had been delayed due to the coronavirus situation in the country and it would open within the next three months.

The ground should be fumigated, and this got delayed due to the Covid-19 situation in the country, he stressed.

The proposed international cricket stadium in Homagama made the news in the last few weeks after it was suspended following discussions with stakeholders, former cricketers and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa.

However, the Polonnaruwa project was announced in the latter part of 2016, and SLC was granted some 43 acres in Hingurakgoda, Polonnaruwa for the purpose. The National Cricket Stadium was part of a proposed multi-sports complex.

The construction of the ground commenced in February 2019, even though tenders had been awarded a year prior, due to issues with the SLC Interim Committee at the time, which did not go ahead with major projects and only continued with day-to-day activities, he said.

The initial estimated cost of the project was Rs. 130 million and so far, Rs. 92 million had been spent, Weraliyadda noted.

“But we think we can complete the construction at Rs. 115 million, which is less than what we estimated,” he noted.