• Thursday, Nov 21, 2019
  • Last Update : 08:36 am

Ageas Bowl, different from all other UK venues

  • Published at 02:55 am June 25th, 2019
Ageas Bowl
Entry to the press box at the Ageas Bowl Dhaka Tribune/Ali Shahriyar Amin from Southampton

The stadium is completely different compared to the other grounds and it has almost everything - big ground, good crowd capacity, scenic view and luxurious hotel with golf court, among other things

The first impression about the Ageas Bowl stadium is that it is huge.

Bangladesh have played at five venues in this World Cup before the Afghanistan match, including the practice game; Sophia Gardens in Cardfiff, The Oval in London, Bristol County Ground in Bristol, Somerset County Ground in Taunton and Trent Bridge in Nottingham. 

No other ground was as big as the Ageas Bowl. 

The adjacent area is beautiful with hillside at one side and golf ground at the other end.

Bangladesh team were practicing at the nets, which was way outside the main stadium. 

There were several nets placed for the batsmen where the Tigers were practicing, and there was a field beside it, just like our BKSP grounds.

 The Shane Warne Stand at the Ageas Bowl Dhaka Tribune/Ali Shahriyar Amin from Southampton

The size of that field was definitely bigger than the Taunton and Bristol venues (around 60m).

After covering the practice session and press conference, a relatively long walk was needed to find out the press box. 

The press box is at the opposite side of “Shane Warne Stand”. 

Yes, legendary leg-spinner Warne played for Hampshire, and was even captain for them once.

To reach the press box, I had to come to the reception area of Hilton at the Ageas Bowl. 

ICC officials guided me after regular security checks, and showed me where the lift is.

 View from the press box at the Ageas Bowl Dhaka Tribune/Ali Shahriyar Amin from Southampton

And the lift indicating the media box or press box is in level three where executive lounges are also in place.

Just before the media box gate, I saw long corridors, one left and one right where luxurious rooms are situated. 

It was quite an unusual experience as a luxurious hotel is being constructed just adjacent to the stadium.  

The visitors in the hotel might see the games from their rooms, but the interesting part is that the check-in time is 3pm and check-out time is 9am. 

So spectators need to stay at least two nights at the hotel to observe a match properly.

The view from the press box was pleasing as hilly areas behind the stand and lots of green tress on slopes make it scenic.

Entry to the press box at the Ageas Bowl Dhaka Tribune/Ali Shahriyar Amin from Southampton

While travelling to the dining room for the media personnel, I observed former Afghanistan captain Asghar Afghan walking in the corridor and heading towards lift. 

The Afghan team have been residing in the hotel for the last few days, and also played against India Saturday before facing Bangladesh. 

It was just a few feet away for them from their rooms to the ground.  

Can it be called the "home ground" for the Afghans then as their home - temporary at least - was just within touching distance?

The stadium is completely different compared to the other grounds and it has almost everything - big ground, good crowd capacity, scenic view and luxurious hotel with golf court, among other things.