Pitch report: Sinhalese Sports Club

Established: 1915
Capacity: 10,000
Floodlights: No
Ends: Tennis Courts End, South End
Home Team: Sinhalese Sports Club
Test History: 40 Tests; 19 home wins; 7 away wins; 14 draws
Last 10 Tests: 4 home wins; 1 away win; 5 draws
Last 10 tosses: 6 batted first (4 wins, 2 draws); 4 bowled first (1 loss; 3 draws)

Overview

The Sinhalese Sports Club Ground, although overhauled by the R Premadasa Stadium as Colombo’s main cricket venue, remains the headquarters of Sri Lanka Cricket – and was formerly known as Maitland Place.

The ground still features many of the original grass banks for spectators, but the giant scoreboard and sightscreens are the most striking sights around the oval.

The venue has been owned by the SSC since 1952 – and was used as an Allied air base during the Second World War. The latest addition is the large media centre that dominates one end of the ground.

Original club membership was limited to Sinhalese men, who kept traditional British customs in terms of dress, grammar and table manners – as they drank fine scotch and held ballroom dancing evenings.

Last Time Out

Sri Lanka completed a series whitewash over Australia in what was the most even contest of a Test series dominated by the hosts.

Hundreds from Dinesh Chandimal and Dhananjaya de Silva rescued Sri Lanka from a poor start with Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon striking early to leave them 26 for 5 but they would post 355 all out.

Australia’s first innings was dominated by a big partnership between Shaun Marsh (130) and Steve Smith (119) but after their departure the tourists crumbled in a heap not before they scraped to a first innings lead of 24 with Rangana Herath claiming 6 for 81.