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What is a Sight Screen in Cricket?
A Cricket Sight Screen is a key part of the ground equipment for any level of play. As the name suggests, it is a Screen of appropriate colour to help a Batsman sight the cricket ball better.
In International cricket this has become more visible because it doubles up as a Sponsor screen as well.
What is the need of a Sight Screen?
Sight screens help in keeping a clear background behind a bowler and assists a batsman in viewing the release point of the ball as it comes out of the hand of a bowler.
Sight screens are installed on both ends of a cricket ground to enable bowling from both ends of the ground.
For Limited overs cricket; ODIs and T20’s since the colour of the Cricket ball is White, a Black coloured screen is used.
While for Test Cricket, the colour of the screen is White as the Red ball is better visible against a white background.
How traditional screens have been?
With almost a decade spent in the sports industry and some international exposure, I have come to realise that sports infrastructure in India is under-developed.
Some of the top Cricket grounds in the country also do not have a proper Sight Screen.
There are some grounds that put tent-like white cloth to cover the ground area behind the bowler. Some Ranji level grounds even have built walls and they paint it white or black.
How are the Screens at top International Cricket grounds?
Lord’s: Home of Cricket
The MCC Lord’s Cricket Ground in London, UK has some of the most advanced ground equipment as the MCC claims to be traditional and innovative in its approach.
The Victorian era Pavilion has a Screen on tracks system with the base being white and a curtain-like layer that can be drawn for the white ball. It seems like a mechanical system.
Wankhade Stadium, Mumbai, India
This ground in the heart of Mumbai city is very compact with small boundaries.
They have a 20’ x 20’ movable structure with wheels and the screen is made of non-steel element suiting its light weight and compact design.
Eden Garden, Kolkata, India
Eden Garden is one of the most beautiful grounds I have personally been to. Its lush, massive green lawn makes you fall in love.
The pavilion has tremendous amount of space and they have a very long (about 100ft perhaps) Screen on track. A portion of the screen has planks with gaps for wind passage and two additional structures which just seem like metal sheets put together tastelessly. On the other end, they have a metal structure on which curtain is hung during play.
Chepauk, Chennai, India
The M.A Chidambaram Stadium at Chennai, is the second oldest Cricket stadium in the country. This ground has a Fixed metal structure with rotating panels to convert White to Black. In 2016, owing to the design of the structure and extremely windy conditions the Sight screen had toppled over causing a major health hazard.
Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), Sydney, Australia
The SCG is a massive stadium which hosts international cricket matches but is also used for other sports like Rugby and Australian Football. It is a massive ground with 44,000 seating capacity.
The Sight screen in this ground is completely electronic and one of the largest in the world. Since the ground is used for sports other than Cricket, it also serves as a media screen to give spectators a better experience. The dimensions of this massive screen reposrtedly are 120ft wide and 20 ft high (the specified size for a professional level ground).
What are your options as a Ground Owner?
With an experience of over 50 cricket grounds and developing unique design solutions for international grounds, we believe that NFS is India’s premier Sight Screen manufacturer.
From an economical model functional for club level to a Motorised world-class Sight Screen that is BCCI and ICC specified, all solutions can be designed and manufactured in-house.
For a local ground that hosts Corporate as well as junior games, we have a Screen that starts from Rs. 75,000.
Before the screens are installed a thorough wind pressure and geographical compatibility testing is done to ensure the most appropriate solution is provided and no damage occurs due to the weather conditions. It’s time we recognise the importance of professional ground equipment as this helps ground-owners differentiate themselves from run-down grounds and in-turn charge a premium per-match.
Have a question? Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 9761800098
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