As the U.S., Canada, and Mexico ready existing stadiums and fields for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, fans of another sport, less popular in North America but with loyal (and royal) spectators worldwide, are looking forward to their world showcase. In June, a modularly built ground in Nassau County, New York will play host to the International Cricket Council’s T20 World Cup, a biannual tournament for the bat-and-ball game.
Plans to bring the cricket tournament to the U.S. are years in the making. The 2024 T20 World Cup marks the first time the global event will be played in the U.S. It is also the first time the United States team has qualified for the event. The U.S. is co-hosting the Twenty20 tournament with the West Indies.
A shortlist of four venues for the matches circulated in July 2023, with contenders at large parks and existing sports venues in Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Morrisville, North Carolina; Dallas; and New York’s Van Cortlandt Park. Community protests in the Bronx dropped the latter from the running, with the ICC instead proposing Eisenhower Park in East Meadow, New York.
Given the stadium’s temporary use, its architect Populous has designed a venue that repurposes stands from existing sports facilities. General admission seating from the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix will be used to construct the stadium. Spectators looking for a more comfortable or celebratory arrangement to watch the match-ups can choose from a party deck, suites, cabanas, and a host of VIP clubs. There will also be no shortage of food and beverage and retail options. The stadium will also house broadcasting studios.
The pitch, a.k.a. the wicket or the playing field, also comes with an interesting backstory: the design of the drop-in turf was developed in Australia by Adelaide Oval Turf Solutions and the grass is currently being tilled in Florida. The field will be transported to New York in May ahead of the tournament.
“Cricket is a truly global sport with a passionate, knowledgeable fanbase and we’re thrilled to partner with the ICC and help bring the Men’s T20 Cricket World Cup to the United States,” said Jeff Keas, senior principal at Populous in a press release. “The modular, sustainable stadium we’ve designed will create a fantastic experience for both U.S. and international cricket fans and visitors to enjoy watching the world’s best teams and players.”
Populous has worked on a number of the world’s most well-known cricket grounds, notably the world’s largest Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad, India; Melbourne Cricket Ground in Australia; and Lord’s Cricket Ground in London.
Between June 3–12 eight ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 matches will be hosted at the temporary venue in New York.