Melbourne Cricket Ground (Australia): The colossal cricket ground in Australia has hosted 274 international matches till now; 112 Tests, 149 ODIs and 13 T20Is. The first Test match at the MCG was in 1877. Dave Gregory’s Australia beat England by 45 runs. In 1971, the stadium had its first taste of limited-overs cricket. Even this time, the Englishmen were at the receiving end. Under the leadership of Bill Lawry, Australia beat England by five wickets. In 2015, Australia beat New Zealand at this ground to lift the World Cup for the fifth time.
Sydney Cricket Ground (Australia): Sydney is next in line with 272 international matches under its belt; 108 Tests, 157 ODIs and seven T20Is. The first Test match at the SCG was in 1882. Billy Murdoch’s Australia beat England by five wickets. In 1979, the first ODI at this venue, involving England again, had ended in no-result. The SCG was supposed to host New Zealand for an ODI on March 15, 2020 but the COVID-19 outbreak cancelled the series mid-way.
Sharjah Cricket Stadium (UAE): Sharjah was an ODI paradise right from the 1980s to early 2000. The stadium in the United Arab Emirates has seen 240 ODIs, nine Tests and 14 T20Is (263 international matches overall). Test cricket entered late, in 2002, but the one-dayers would lit up the ground. Film actors, industrialists to businessmen — all would attend matches. Sachin Tendulkar’s famous ‘Desert Storm’ knock against Australia in 1998 was here. Along with Pakistan’s Saeed Anwar, Tendulkar holds the record for most ODI hundreds (7) at this venue.
Lord’s Cricket Ground (London): In the fourth position with 215 international matches — 139 Tests, 66 ODIs and 10 T20Is — Lord’s is mostly known for Test cricket. Lord Harris’ England beat Australia by an innings and five runs in the first ever Test in 1884. The first ODI, in 1972, was won by Australia. Eleven years later, India won its maiden World Cup here under the leadership of Kapil Dev. Former captain Sourav Ganguly also has a history with the ground. He scored a hundred on Test debut in 1996 and six years later, took his shirt off at the royal balcony to celebrate India’s win in the Natwest series. Last year, England lifted its maiden World Cup here.
Harare Sports Club (Zimbabwe): Zimbabwe may not be a successful cricket team at present but HSC remains a busy park for the sport. The first Test match, between Zimbabwe and India in 1992, was a drawn affair. Sanjay Manjrekar and Dave Houghton had scored hundreds. The only ODI of the same tour, also the first one here, was won by India. Zimbabwe great Grant Flower had made his debut under Houghton. Harare has hosted 210 international matches: 151 ODIs, 36 Tests and 23 T20Is.
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