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Sports Facilities in Maharashtra

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Sports Facilities in Maharashtra

Maharashtra has been at the forefront of many sports in India. Cricket and Kabadi are the most loved sports in the state but not just this, Maharashtra is also one of the best places to enjoy some of the latest sports facilities. Let's explore the entire sports scenario in Maharashtra:

Major Sports Played in Maharashtra

Cricket in Maharashtra

Cricket in Maharashtra
Kids practicing at the famous Shivajin Park in Mumbai / source

Maharashtra has undoubtedly dominated Indian and world cricket right from the introduction of the game in India. The first annual cricket tournament in the country started in 1877 in Bombay (now Mumbai) as a match between the Bombay Gymkhana (Europeans) and the Parsees. It then expanded into the Bombay Presidency tournament taking on a triangular, quadrangular and pentangular format till 1936 when the national Ranji Trophy replaced it as the premier cricket tournament of India.

Maharashtra currently has three full fledged teams that participate in the Ranji Trophy. They are the Mumbai team, the Maharashtra team and the Vidarbha team. Out of the 79 Ranji tournaments held so far, the Mumbai team has won a whopping 40 titles and the Maharashtra team has won two, making the region the strongest in cricketing terms.

Mumbai’s players have continued to dominate the world scene also with one single place – Shivaji Park at Dadar – having produced more international cricketers than any other venue in the world! Right from Vijay Merchant, Vijay Manjrekar, and Subhash Gupte to Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli – all of cricket’s great record holders have trained here. Ajit Wadekar, Faroukh Engineer, Sandeep Patil, Ajit Agarkar, Amol Mazumdar – almost every generation’s cricketing hero has been a part of Shivaji Park’s glorious history.

Mumbai has had three official test venues, the Bombay Gymkhana, the Brabourne Stadium, and the Wankhede Stadium with the D.Y Patil stadium at Navi Mumbai being the fourth venue where international tournaments have been held. Elsewhere in Maharashtra, Nagpur and Pune also have been venues for international cricket.

The cricket world cup (1987, 1996, and 2011) matches were held thrice in Maharashtra venues. The IPL matches have also been played here and the Champions trophy has also been played in Maharashtra. Mumbai has its own world famous Kanga League (club level), Times Shield (corporate level) and Harris Shield (Inter School level) tournaments.

Also See: Cricket in Mumbai | Mumbai Cricket Association | Cricket in Pune | Cricket in Nagpur


Football in Maharashtra

Football in MumbaiThe Cooperage ground in Mumbai has seen many iconic football struggles and football teams from Maharashtra have traditionally been at very popular in the domestic football scene. In the Durand cup, Mumbai has two teams – Mumbai FC, Mahindra United and Air India. The Pune FC and the Mumbai FC also compete in the Football Super League in India. Moreover the Maharashtra Football team has won the National Football Championship – the Santosh Trophy four times.

There are several leagues and tournaments played in Maharashtra and there has recently been an effort by the Western India Football Association to invest 100 crores into various football activities to encourage the sport in Maharashtra.
The Ahmed Sailor tournament for under-16 inter-school football held in Mumbai is very popular.

Also see: Football in Pune | Football in Nagpur

Hockey in Maharashtra

Mumbai has a rich hockey tradition. Many greats in Indian Hockey such as Hiranna Nirmal, Tushar Khandekar, Dhanraj Pillay and Viren Rasquinha have come from this state. The first astro-turf surfaces in India were deployed in Mumbai. There are as many as 30 different hockey tournaments played throughout the year in this state.

Traditional Sports Played in Maharashtra

Traditional Sports in Maharashtra
A girl performs Mallakhamb / source

Mallakhamb, Mud Wrestling, and Lagori are the traditional sports in Maharashtra. Mallakhamb has been developed to the level of a serious sports discipline in Maharashtra. There are three major categories (Pole Mallakhamb, hanging Mallakhamb, and rope Mallakhamb) with almost 30 to 35 different gymnastics and acrobatics exercises within these various categories. Many efforts have been made to successfully introduce Mallakhamb at national and international levels and it has found some popularity in TV shows as a method used in acrobatic dancing.

Wrestling – especially mud wrestling is extremely popular in Maharashtra and the first individual Olympic bronze medalist of Independent India – Kashaba Jadhav – was from Maharashtra. Maharashtra has been regularly represented at the Hind Kesari (National Indian Style Wrestling Championships). Some of the notable Hind Kesari winners from Maharashtra are Amol Barate, Maruti Mane, Yogesh Dhodke, and Harishchandra Birajdar.

Lagori – The traditional Maharashtrian version of lagori is called Lingorchya. It is played all over Maharashtra. The game is being promoted at the national level and Maharashtra along with Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, and Karnataka – has emerged as a major team.

Sports Facilities in Maharashtra

Maharashtra has world class sports facilities and some of these are famous for having hosted national and international events and competitions. Some of these facilities are listed here.

Stadiums in Maharashtra

The major sports stadiums in Maharashtra are mentioned below:

Brabourne Stadium: Located in the prime location of South Mumbai the Brabourne Stadium is one of the oldest cricket stadium of India and Mumbai itself. The cricket ground is owned by the Cricket Club of India (CCI). Based on the recommendation of Maharaja of Patiala the stadium was named after Brabourne after the name of Lord Brabourne and came into existence in 1937. This ground has witnessed various memorable innings from time to time by various players which later became milestone in the history of cricket. Know more

Wankhede Stadium: Located in the church-gate area of Mumbai is one of the most popular and well equipped cricket stadiums India has. Operating under the control of Mumbai Cricket Association Wankhede Stadium has proudly hosted various national and international cricket matches from time to time. With sitting capacity of 45,000 spectators at a time teams from various nations have played some unforgettable matches and innings on this ground. The final of forth coming World Cup Cricket is scheduled to be held on this ground. Know more

Stadiums in Maharashtra
View of Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai / source

Azad Maidan: Located in South Mumbai this triangular sports ground is the first choice of aspiring cricketers of Mumbai for practice. One can see huge fleet of young cricketers sweating on ground in the morning and evening for long hours with bat and ball to improve their skills and play their favourite game without any interruption.

Apart from being used as sports ground the Azad Maidan has played an important role in India’s movement of freedom when the eminent leaders like Mahatama Gandhi and various Indian leaders hold public meetings to encourage Mumbaikars to revolt against the British rule.

Oval Maidan: Designed in Oval shape the Oval maidan is promptly used for various sports activities from time to time. Located in its north is DLF cricket academy which is owned by the former and veteran cricketer Dilip Vengsarkar.

Shivaji Park: Shivaji park has witnessed the growth of legends of Indian cricket such as Sunil Gavaskar, Sachin Tendulkar, Ajit Agarkar, Pravin Amre, Vinod Kambli and Sanjay Manjrekar sweating on ground to achieve the heights of success. This ground also has a lot of historical importance attached to it. The ground was venue for numerous political rallies and protests which held during pre and post independence era. Know more

Nehru Stadium Pune: The one and alone stadium in Pune is the Nehru Stadium. Erstwhile known as Club of Maharashtra Ground it is the only stadium in Pune which is used for several sports activities and organizing matches of national and international repute. The stadium was constructed in 1969 and has the sitting capacity of 25,000 spectators.

Also see: Stadiums in Pune | Stadiums in Nagpur

The stadium is mainly used for the sports of cricket and has so far organized 11 One Day International Cricket Matches including the two matches of Cricket World Cup of 1987 and 1996 respectively. The first one day International Match was played here in the year 1984 between Indian and England.

Vidharba Cricket Association Stadium: Erstwhile known as Vidharbha Cricket Association Ground was the only cricket stadium in Nagpur. The first match hosted here was in October 3, 1969.

In November 2008, a new stadium was constructed as named as Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium. This stadium was constructed on the International norms and the first match played here was between India and Australia. The final of the forth coming Cricket World Cup 2011 is proposed to be hosted in this stadium. The stadium has the sitting capacity of 45, 000 spectators.

Besides this there is a huge fleet various small and local stadiums in every district of Maharashtra where district level matches are played.

Other Major Sports Facilities in Maharashtra

All of the below mentioned faculties have been recognized by professional sports bodies of India or have hosted a regional, national level, or an international sports event.

Discipline
Area: Mumbai Metropolitan Region


Cricket
  • Brabourne Stadium, Churchgate
  • Wankhede Stadium, Churchgate
  • D.Y Patil Stadium, Nerul

Swimming
  • Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Olympic Swimming Pool, Dadar
  • Nirlon Olympic Municipal Swimming Pool, Goregaon
  • General Arunkumar Vaidya Swimming Pool, Chembur
  • Lions Municipal Swimming Pool, Ghatkopar
  • Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Swimming Pool, Kandivali
  • Priyadarshni Sports Complex, Mulund
  • Shahaji Raje Krida Sankul, Andheri
  • Pransukhlal Mafatlal Boat Club and Swimming Pool

Golf
  • United Services Club, Navynagar, Colaba
  • Willingdon Sports Club, Mahalaxmi
  • Royal Palms Golf Course, Goregaon
  • Bombay Presidency Golf Club (BPGC), Chembur
  • Kharghar Valley Golf Course (KVGC), Kharghar
  • Golden Swan Country Club, Thane
  • Lodha Golflinks, Palava

Football
  • Cooperage Ground, Colaba
  • Dadoji Kondadev Stadium, Thane
  • Catholic Gymkhana, Khar

Hockey
  • Mahindra MHA stadium, Churchgate
  • Don Bosco Grounds, Matunga

Squash

  • CCI, Churchgate
  • Bombay Gymkhana, Fort
  • Acres Club, Chembur
  • Goregaon Sports Club, Malad
  • Juhu VileParle Gymkhana, Juhu
  • Khar Gymkhana, Khar
  • Otters Club, Bandra
  • Willingdon Sports Club, Mahalaxmi
  • The Club, Andheri

Badminton
  • National Sports Club of India, Mahalaxmi
  • Copeck Academy for Badminton, Mulund
  • Padukone Shuttler’s Academy
  • Rudrani Badminton Academy, Mulund
  • Shahaji Raje Krida Sankul, Andheri
  • Navi Mumbai Sports Association, Vashi
  • Chembur Gymkhana, Chembur
  • Spring Club Trust, Kandivali
  • Dahisar Sports Club, Dahisar

Track and Field
  • University Sports Pavilion, Marine Lines
  • IIT, Bombay Sports Complex
  • Priyadarshni Sports Complex, Mulund
  • Shahaji Raje Krida Sankul, Andheri

Boating
  • Royal Bombay Yacht Club, Colaba
  • Gateway Sailing Club, Colaba
  • Navy Saling Club, Colaba

Discipline
Area: Pune Region

Cricket
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium
  • Subroto Roy Sahara Stadium (Gahunje Stadium)
  • National Defence Academy Ground Khadakwasla
  • College of Military Engineering Ground, Khadki

Swimming
  • Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex
  • Deccan Gymkhana Swimming Complex
  • Symbiosis Centre for Health Care
  • Veer Savarkar Swimming Pool, Kondhwa

Golf
  • Pune Golf Course, Yerawada
  • Army Southern Star RSI Golf Course, Ghorpadi
  • Oxford Golf and Country Club, Bavdhan
  • National Defence Academy, Khadakvasla
  • Blue Ridge Golf Course, Hinjewadi
  • College of Military Engineering, Khadki
  • Lodha Belmondo Golf Course, Gahunje

Football
  • Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex
  • Police Grounds

Hockey
  • Annasaheb Magar PCMC Stadium, Pimpri
  • AFK Hockey Ground, Khadki
  • Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Balewadi

Track and Field
  • Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Balewadi
  • Rajendrasinhji Stadium

Squash
  • Amida Club, Sinhagad Road
  • Armed Forces Medical College, Wanowri
  • Mahindra United World College, Mulshi
  • Paradise Country Club, Velhe
  • Pune Club, Bund Garden Road
  • Residency Club, Camp

Badminton
  • Poona District and Metropolitan Badminton Association(PDMBA), Shivajinagar
  • Poona Club, Bund Garden Road
  • Sardar Vallabhbhai Pa9tel Badminton Hall, Piimpri
  • College of Engineering Pune ( COEP), Shivaji Nagar
  • Balewadi Badminton Court, Balewadi

Boating
  • Royal Connaught Boat Club

Discipline
Area: Aurangabad Region

Cricket
  • N2 Stadium
  • Shivaji Maidan
  • Cantonment Military Parade Ground
  • Marathwada Sanskrit Mandal Ground
  • Marathwada University Ground
  • College of Military Engineering Ground, Khadki

Swimming
  • Aurangabad Gymkhana Club, Airport Road
  • Municipal Swimming Pool, Samarth Nagar

Golf
  • Army Golf Course, Aurangabad Cantonment
  • MGM Golf Club, Padegaon

Football
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Engineering Sports Complex

Hockey
  • STC Aurangabad

Track and Field
  • STC Aurangabad

Squash
  • Ambassador Ajanta, Jalna Road
  • Aurangabad Sports Club, Waledgaon
  • Wockhardt Limited, Waluj

Badminton
  • Khadki Sports Association Badminton Hall
  • Aurangabd Divisional Sports Complex
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Engineering Sports Complex

Discipline
Area: Nagpur Region


Cricket
  • Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium
  • Ambajhari Ordnance Factory Ground
  • VNIT (VRCE) Cricket Ground

Swimming
  • Nandadeep Aqua Healthcare, Suyog Nagar
  • NIT Swimming Pool, Ambazari
  • NEERI Swimming Pool, RPTS Road
  • LIT Swimming Pool, Amravati Road
  • Medical Swimming Pool, Ridge Road

Golf
  • Air Force Anuraksha Kaman Golf Course
  • Army Garuda Golf Institute Kamtee, Cantonment
Football
  • Yeshwant Stadium
  • Hislop College Grounds
  • Young Muslim Football Ground

Hockey
  • Vidarbha Hockey Association Ground

Track and Field
  • Sant Tukdoji Maharaj University Grounds, Nagpur

Squash
  • National Academy, Chindwara Road
  • Maharaj Bag Club, Dharampeth

Badminton
  • Vidarbha Bridge Association Hall, Sankar Nagar
  • Annasaheb Public Badminton Court

Discipline
Area: Rest of Maharashtra

Cricket

  • Wadia Park Ground, Ahmednagar
  • Akola Cricket Club Ground, Akola
  • Hanuman Vyayam Prasarak Mandal Ground, Amravati
  • Hutatma Anant Kanhere Maidan, Nashik
  • Zilla Parishad Ground, Satara
  • Central Maidan, Thane
  • Postal Ground, Yavatmal

Swimming

  • District sports Complex. Akola
  • KDMC Swimming Pool, Dombivali
  • Swatantra Veer Savarkar Jaltaran Talav, Nashik
  • CIDCO Swimming Pool, Nashik
  • Panchavati Swimming Pool, Nashik

Golf
  • Army Cavalry Golf Course, Ahmednagar
  • Army Mechanized Center, Ahmednagar
  • Amby Valley, Lonavala
  • Army Golf Course, Kolhapur
  • Army AEPTA Golf Course, Deolali
  • India Bulls Golf City, Savrolli
  • Lodha Golf Links, Dombivali
  • The Club, Mahabaleshwar
  • Army AEPTA Golf Course, Nashik
  • Army Central Armament Depot, Pulgaon
  • Maneri Golf Village, Sindhudurg

Football
  • Rajarshi Shahu Football Stadium, Kolhapur
  • Football Grounds, College Road, Nashik
  • Chatrapati Shivaji Stadium, Jalgaon
  • District Spor s Complex, Dhule

Hockey
  • Major Dhyan Chand Hockey Stadium, Kolhapur
  • North Maharashtra University Sports Complex, Jalgaon

Track and Field
  • Territorial Army Parade Ground, Amravati
  • Chatrapati Shivaji Stadium, Nashik
  • Chatrapati Shivaji Stadium, Karad
  • Chatrapati Shivaji Stadium, Kolhapur
  • Guru Govindsingh Ground, Nanded
  • Shahu Stadium, Satara
  • Indira Gandhi Stadium (Solapur)
  • MR College Stadium, Walchandnagar

Squash
  • Artillery Centre, Nasik Road Camp, Nashik
  • Tip-Top Health Club, College Road, Nashik
  • Llyod Steel Industries, Wardha
  • Residency Club, Kolhapur
  • Naval College of Engineering, Ins Shivaji, Lonavala,
  • The Officer’s Club, Hotgi Road, Sholapur

Badminton
  • Vidarbha Bridge Association Hall, Sankar Nagar
  • Annasaheb Public Badminton Court

Boating
  • Bombay Sailing Association, Mandwa


  

Famous Sports Personalities from Maharashtra

Many famous names in sports have hailed from Maharashtra and the honor and recognition that they have brought to the country has been recognized through the various awards that have been bestowed on them. Here is a list of some of the more famous names from this state who have gone on to heap rich successes for the country. While we have endeavored to make this an extensive list, it is not exhaustive and certainly by no means complete as sportsmen continue to arise and excel from the state.

Badminton
  • Damayanti Tambay Four times national champion. Arjuna Award winner
  • Uday Pawar (National Doubles Champion, Represented India in Thomas Cup)

Billiards
  • Wilson Jones - World champion, Dronacharya Award winner
  • Michael Ferreira - World champion, Arjuna Award, and Padma Bhushan Award winner
  • Pankaj Advani - World Champion, Arjuna Award winner
Chess
  • Rohini Khadilkar – International Master, National champion and twice Asian chess champion and the first women in India to participate in a men’s competition and beat existing champions! Is also an Arjuna award winner.
  • Pravin Thipsay – Grandmaster in chess, nine times national chess champion, Arjuna Award winner.
  • Bhagyashree Sathe-Thipsay – International Master, Padma Shri and Arjuna Award winner.
  • Anupama Gokhale – National champion and the youngest person to receive Padma Shri at the age of 16.
  • Raghunandan Gokhale – Dronacharya Award winner

Cricket
The famous Vijay trio of Indian cricket – Vijay Merchant, Vijay Hazare, and Vijay Manjrekar – were from Maharashtra. Other notable cricketers from the state who made a mark at the world stage are;
  • D.B Deodhar
  • Polly Umrigar
  • Chandu Borde
  • Vinoo Mankad
  • Madhav Mantri
  • Naren Tamhane
  • Nari Contractor
  • Subhas Gupte
  • Bapu Nadkarni
  • Ramakant Desai
  • Ibrahim Maka
  • Ramnath Parker
  • Dilip Sardesai
  • Ajit Wadekar
  • Eknath Solkar
  • Sunil Gavaskar
  • Faroukh Engineer
  • Dliip Vengsarkar
  • Sandeep Patil
  • Ravi Shastri
  • Sanjay Manjrekar
  • Ajit Agarkar
  • Hrishikesh Kanitkar
  • Sachin Tendulkar
  • Vinod Kambli
  • Wasim Jaffer
  • Ramesh Powar
  • Zaheer Khan
  • Samir Dighe
  • Munaf Patel
  • Ajinkya Rahane
  • Pravin Tambe

Hockey
  • Merwyn Fernandes – Arjuna Award winner
  • Jude Menezes– Arjuna Award winner
  • Dhanraj Pillay, star player, Arjuna Award winner, and current manager of Indian team
  • Ashish Ballal– Arjuna Award winner

Shooting
  • Anjali Bhagwat– Arjuna Award winner
  • Deepali Deshpande– Arjuna Award winner
  • Tejaswini Sawant– Arjuna Award winner

Swimming
  • Persis Madan
  • Veerdhaval Khade

Wrestling
The most famous name here is Kashaba Jadhav who won the first individual bronze for the country at the 1952.

Olympic games
Yachting

  • Faroukh Tarapore
  • Fali Unwalla


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