The HPCA Stadium has hosted several high-profile matches over the years, including international Test matches, ODIs, and T20Is. It has also been the venue for several Indian Premier League matches.
The stadium is particularly popular with fans for its serene atmosphere and its unique Himalayan charm.
The sight of the snow-capped mountains in the distance while watching a cricket match is an experience that is truly unforgettable.
The HPCA Stadium is a testament to the passion for cricket that runs deep in the veins of the people of Himachal Pradesh.
It is a venue that offers a unique and memorable experience for fans of the game from all over the world
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, located in the Dharmshala hill station of Himachal Pradesh, India, is an international cricket stadium.
Established as the home ground for the Himachal Pradesh cricket teams, it has also hosted One Day Internationals and Test matches.
Even HPCA Stadium not the most stunning stadium in terms of design, its picturesque setting at 1,457 meters above sea level, against the backdrop of the Himalayan mountains, creates a unique spectator experience.
The high altitude contributes to the venue’s reputation for six hitting, making it a favorable pitch for powerful hitters.
The HPCA Stadium has sporadically hosted IPL matches for Kings XI Punjab and is known for its scenic beauty and challenging access during harsh winters.
Notably, it hosted matches during the 2016 ICC World Twenty20 and is set to host five games of the 2023 Cricket World Cup, including a match between New Zealand and India.
Summary & Key Takeaways
Location and Scenic Setting
Situated in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, at an altitude of 1,457 meters.
Offers picturesque views of the Himalayan mountains.
High altitude contributes to the stadium's reputation for big hitting.
Home ground for Himachal Pradesh cricket teams.
Hosts international matches, including ODIs and Tests.
Known for hosting IPL matches for Kings XI Punjab.
Venue for 2016 ICC World Twenty20 and selected for the 2023 Cricket World Cup.
History and Development
Inaugurated in 2003, envisioned by Anurag Thakur.
Renovated in 2009, increasing capacity to 23,000.
Features Bermuda grass pitch, unique in India for aiding swing bowlers.
Stadium Capacity and Features
Seating capacity of 23,000 post-renovation.
Includes various stands and VIP areas for an enhanced spectator experience.
Hosted 10 IPL matches with a record high score of 232 runs.
Known for favoring pacers with movement off the pitch.
Average first innings score of 211.
Balanced nature, suitable for both batting and bowling.
Hosted India vs. England ODI in 2013 and India vs. Australia Test in 2017.
Venue for notable World Cup and T20 matches.
Virat Kohli's 127 against West Indies as a highlight.
Facilities for Spectators and Players
Comfortable seating, corporate boxes, lounges, and modern amenities.
Includes a hotel, gymnasium, and spa within the complex.
Located near Kangra Airport, accessible by taxi.
Offers stunning natural beauty, being close to the home of the Dalai Lama.
Visitors advised to consider the high altitude and weather conditions.
Tibetan-style architecture that complements the natural surroundings.
Features vibrant colors and a glass-enclosed VIP pavilion.
A unique cricket venue blending sports, culture, and natural beauty.
Offers a distinct challenge and excitement due to its pitch favoring fast bowlers.
Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium: One of the Highest in the World’s Stadium
Nestled in the Dharmshala hills, the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium stands out for its scenic Himalayan backdrop and high altitude, enhancing its cricketing charm.
Home to the Himachal Pradesh cricket teams, this international venue has witnessed significant cricketing events, including IPL matches for Kings XI Punjab and key fixtures in the 2016 ICC World Twenty20.
Its high-altitude pitch, known for assisting six hitters, adds to the exciting spectator experience.
Additionally, its role in the upcoming 2023 Cricket World Cup, hosting matches like New Zealand vs India, marks its significance in international cricket.
The History of Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, commonly known as the HPCA Stadium, epitomizes a blend of architectural elegance and sporting spirit.
Nestled in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, at over 1400 meters above sea level, the stadium’s inception story is as captivating as its landscape.
Anurag Thakur, then President of the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association, envisioned creating a world-class cricketing venue in the challenging terrain of the Dhauladhar hills.
With limited funds and a steep slope of 300 feet to contend with, the journey began in 2002, culminating in its inauguration in 2003.
In 2009, recognizing the stadium’s burgeoning reputation, a significant refurbishment upgraded its capacity to 23,000 spectators.
This renovation also introduced floodlights and amenities like hotel rooms, media boxes, and gyms, primarily catering to the Indian Premier League (IPL) requirements.
This foresight paid off in 2010 when Dharamshala became the second home ground for the Kings XI Punjab, hosting its first IPL match against the Deccan Chargers.
The stadium’s pitch, characterized by Bermuda grass, uniquely supports swing bowlers—a first in India.
This combination has seen the stadium play host to several notable matches, including the 2016 ICC World T20 Group A matches and a Super 10 stage match, as well as its first Test match in 2017 between India and Australia.
Thus, the HPCA Stadium stands not just as a cricketing venue but as a symbol of ambition and adaptability, etching its place in the annals of cricket history.
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) Stadium, known for its scenic beauty, boasts a seating capacity of 23,000.
This capacity, established post-renovation in 2009, positions the stadium as a significant venue in India, although it does not rank among the world’s largest cricket stadiums in terms of seating.
The design incorporates various stands, including the club lounge, VVIP area, and pavilion terrace, enhancing the fan experience.
The seating plan is meticulously designed to offer spectators the best possible views, considering the stadium’s unique location amidst the Himalayas.
In terms of global standing, while the HPCA Stadium’s capacity is modest compared to some of the world’s largest cricket venues, its architectural beauty and setting make it a unique and attractive destination for cricket fans.
Its layout, which includes clearly marked stands and seating areas, ensures a comfortable and engaging experience for spectators.
The detailed maps of the stadium assist visitors in navigating the venue effectively, from finding their seats to exploring the indoor and outdoor practice areas.
Record attendance and iconic moments further mark the HPCA Stadium’s significance in cricket history.
It has hosted 10 IPL matches, with the highest score in an inning being 232 runs, achieved by Punjab Kings (then Kings XI Punjab) against Royal Challengers Bangalore in 2011.
This match, featuring a stellar performance by Adam Gilchrist, remains a highlight in the stadium’s history.
Overall, the HPCA Stadium combines capacity with a unique fan experience, set against the backdrop of the majestic Himalayas, making it a must visit stadium for both domestic and international cricket events.
Pitch and Conditions
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, known for its stunning location in Dharamshala, offers a pitch that historically favors pacers due to its movement off the pitch.
This characteristic often plays a crucial role, especially in the early stages of a match, challenging top-order batsmen and often dictating the strategy of teams who prefer chasing after winning the toss.
Despite its bias towards pacers, the pitch has also been conducive to batting, offering good bounce and carry that benefit hard-hitting batters.
The average first innings score at Dharamshala is 211, reflecting the pitch’s balanced nature between batting and bowling.
This balance is further highlighted by match statistics, with three wins after batting first compared to five by chasing teams. The pitch’s behavior has remained consistent over the years, maintaining its dual nature.
Weather conditions at the HPCA Stadium, due to its high altitude and proximity to the Himalayas, often include overcast skies, which further aid seam bowlers.
However, these conditions don’t drastically diminish the pitch’s suitability for batting, as evidenced by high scores like England’s 364/9 against Bangladesh in the 2023 ODI Cricket World Cup, the highest team score at the venue.
Individual performances, such as Dawid Malan’s 140 runs off 107 balls, and Mohammed Shami’s bowling figures of 5/54 against New Zealand, also showcase the pitch’s versatility and the impact of weather conditions on gameplay.
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Memorable Matches and Moments
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium has witnessed numerous iconic matches, each contributing to its storied history.
Notably, the stadium hosted India and England in an ODI in 2013, a match where England emerged victorious.
Another significant moment came in 2017 during a Test match between India and Australia, with India securing a win.
Historically, the stadium gained prominence by hosting its first-ever ODI World Cup match in 2023, featuring Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
It also played a pivotal role during the ICC Twenty20 World Cup in 2016, underlining its importance on the global cricket stage and popular tournament in India.
Record-breaking performances have further elevated the stadium’s reputation. Virat Kohli’s 127 runs against the West Indies in 2014 stands out as the highest individual score at this venue.
Additionally, Suresh Raina’s remarkable achievement of hitting 7 sixes in a match showcases the stadium’s conducive environment for high-scoring games.
The 2013 ODI between India and England also saw a dramatic finish, with India successfully chasing down 227/3.
These moments, alongside Adam Gilchrist’s memorable century in the IPL against RCB in 2011, have solidified the HPCA Stadium’s status as a venue of memorable cricketing feats and dramatic finishes.
Facilities and Features
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium in Dharamshala offers a range of facilities and features for spectators and players, including:
Luxurious corporate boxes
Lounges with enchanting views
Modern scoreboards and sound systems
Adequate lighting for night matches
Well-equipped dressing rooms and practice areas
Modern gymnasium, spa, steam bath, sauna, and residential academy with modern facilities.
The Pavilion Dharamshala hotel within the stadium complex offers luxurious accommodation and panoramic views.
Visitor Information: Location and Tips
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, widely known as the HPCA Stadium, is a significant cricket venue situated in Dharamshala, Kangra district, Himachal Pradesh, India.
Internationally recognized as the home of the Dalai Lama, Dharamshala’s natural beauty enhances the stadium’s allure.
The stadium is about 11 km northeast of Kangra Airport in Gaggal, making it accessible yet nestled in scenic surroundings.
Taxis are the most convenient mode of transportation within the city, especially given the hilly terrain.
Given the high altitude of the stadium, visitors should be mindful of the low-pressure conditions, which might affect those with certain health conditions.
Planning a visit well before 5:00 PM is recommended to fully enjoy the stadium’s beauty and surroundings.
Considering the open-air nature of the stadium, visitors should be prepared for varying weather conditions, including sun protection.
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium in Dharamshala is renowned for its unique Tibetan-style architecture, which blends harmoniously with its natural surroundings.
The sloping rooftops, vibrant colors, and open design reflect the region’s rich cultural heritage and commitment to sustainability.
The stadium offers a variety of seating options, including a glass-enclosed VIP pavilion with stunning views of the Dhauladhar range.
Final Words about Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium
The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium in Dharamshala, with its 23,000-seat capacity, is more than just a cricket venue. It’s a blend of sports and culture, beautifully set in the Himalayas.
This stadium serves as the home for the Himachal Pradesh cricket team and occasionally hosts the IPL team Punjab Kings. It has witnessed major events like the 2016 ICC World Twenty20 and the 2023 Cricket World Cup.
The stadium’s design, inspired by Tibetan architecture and local culture, features vibrant colors, ryegrass fields, and sloping rooftops.
Its facilities, including a luxurious VIP pavilion, offer comfort and a great experience for spectators. Both combination, making HPCA Stadium as one of the best stadium to visit in India.
Located 11 km from Kangra Airport, the stadium is accessible by taxi, making visits convenient despite the hilly area, making it accessible.
An interesting point for cricket fans is the pitch, known to favor fast bowlers. This presents a unique challenge and excitement for matches, especially for teams known for their batting or spin bowling.
FAQs - Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium
What is the highest score in the HPCA Stadium?
The highest score in the HPCA Stadium, Dharamshala is 330/6, which was scored by India against West Indies in an ODI match in 2014. Virat Kohli was the top scorer for India with 127 runs.
How big is Dharamshala cricket stadium?
The HPCA Stadium, Dharamshala has a seating capacity of 23,000 spectators. It is a medium-sized stadium compared to some of the other international cricket stadiums in India.
What is the record of IPL in HPCA Stadium?
The HPCA Stadium, Dharamshala has hosted a total of eight IPL matches so far. The Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) are the most successful team at the stadium, having won five matches and lost three.