Sri Lanka Cricket’s interim committee is considering moving the first Test between Sri Lanka and West Indies from the customary venue at Galle to Colombo because of the cost factor.
Galle has traditionally become the curtain-raiser venue for any Test series and has proved to be a favourite hunting ground for the home team which has won 14 of the 26 Tests played there since 1998 giving them a win percentage of 53.84 compared to 46.15% at the SSC and 37.50% at the R Premadasa Stadium and 44.44% at the P Sara Oval.
However the last five Tests played at Galle has produced only two wins for Sri Lanka.
With the West Indies tour not generating any big revenue to Sri Lanka Cricket, the chances are that the interim committee would prefer playing the two matches at the SSC or R Premadasa Stadium and at the P Sara Oval to cut costs.
The first Test is scheduled from October 14-18 and the second Test at the P Sara Oval from October 22-26.
“In terms of TV broadcasting rights we will receive Rs. 45 million for the West Indies tour whereas for the tour by Pakistan we received Rs. 55 million and the tour by India Rs 300 million,” said SLC interim committee vice president Kushil Gunasekera.
Gunasekera said that although SLC owns the ground at Galle they still have to pay the Galle Municipality taxes when a Test match is staged there.
“We have to pay the municipality Rs. 125,000 per day in addition to other overhead costs. We’ll need to seriously consider the cost factor especially for this tour,” he said.
Gunasekera said a final decision on Galle as a Test venue for the West Indies series will be taken at the interim committee meeting on Monday after consultation with the team members and officials.
WEST INDIES TOUR ITINERARY
Oct 1: Arrival
Oct 4-5: 2-day game at R Premadasa Stadium
Oct 8-10: 3-day game at SSC
Oct 14-18: 1st Test at Galle/Colombo
Oct 22-26: 2nd Test at P Sara Oval
Oct 29: 1-day game at Pallekele
Nov 1: 1st ODI at R Premadasa Stadium
Nov 4: 2nd ODI at R Premadasa Stadium
Nov 7: 3rd ODI at Pallekele
Nov 9: 1st T20I at Pallekele
Nov 12: 2nd T20I at R Premadasa Stadium
Nov 13: Departure