Tyronne Fernando Stadium
|Location||Moratuwa, Western Province|
|Owner||Moratuwa Sports Club|
|Operator||Sri Lanka Cricket|
|Press Box End
|First Test||8 September 1992: Sri Lanka v Australia|
|Last Test||8 December 1993: Sri Lanka v West Indies|
|First ODI||31 March 1984: Sri Lanka v New Zealand|
|Last ODI||14 August 1993: Sri Lanka v India|
|Domestic team information|
|Moratuwa Cricket Club (? – present)|
|As of 28 April 2009
De Soysa Park is a multi-use stadium in Moratuwa, Sri Lanka. It is currently used mostly for cricket matches. The stadium holds 15,000 people and hosted its first Test match in 1992. The ground opened in 1941 and gained Test status in 1979. Moratuwa, located just eight miles (13 km) south from the city of Colombo, has produced a large number of cricketers for both Ceylon and Sri Lanka. The town is renowned for its carpentry, musicians (especially 'Baila'), fishing and for its philanthropists: the de Soysa family. Indeed it was this famous family that initiated the development of De Soysa Park Stadium, when they donated the 5 acre (20,000 sq m) plot of land to the Urban Council in 1941, to develop the Sports Complex. An additional 2 acres were sold under its market value by another member of the family. The Ground was named the "De Soysa " Park and subsequently used mainly for Moratuwa Sports Club (MSC) and school competitions. It was again A. H. T. De Soysa that assisted the call for putting up a the first stadium/pavilion in 1952. The club, its presidents D. H. L. De Silva, Dr. H. I. Fernando and local MP Wimalasiri De Mel took a keen interest in developing it further. Later Moratuwa received more support from the then Deputy Foreign Minister, Tyronne Fernando, in the year 1978 to 1979. A stadium was built, which could accommodate approximately 16,000 spectators. The first ever-visiting team to play was the West Indians in 1979.
The ground has traditionally favoured the batsmen. However, the pitch can break up and the ball then has a tendency to keep low. The first ever Test Match to be played at this venue was against Australia on the 8th of September 1992. Allan Border made 106 and Ian Healy 71 as the visitors scored 337 in the first innings and controlled the match thereafter. However half centuries from Aravinda De Silva and Hashan Tillakaratne ensured a draw for the home side.
The most memorable of the four Test matches - they were all drawn - to have been played here was the third, against South Africa. On the last day Jonty Rhodes defied Muttiah Muralitharan to score 101* and keep the series alive.
In recent times the venue is mostly used for the foreign teams to play their side games and for Sebastianites to play their home matches in the domestic season. In recent times the wicket has become rather low in bounce, is conducive to spin, but is generally favourable to the batsmen.
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