The London Stadium, the centrepiece of the London 2012 summer Olympic and Paralympic Games, is set to play host to games at the 2019 Cricket World Cup, potentially drawing the biggest crowd for the country in the modern history of the sport.
The expected deal would secure two separate matches to be staged at the stadium in a wider push to popularise the game with new and younger audiences, UK newspaper the Guardian reports.
Although negotiations are yet to be completed, when Tom Harrison, chief executive of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB,) was asked about the prospect, he said: “It would be an amazing statement – 60,000 people in a ground in the UK watching World Cup cricket. It’s making a statement about what cricket means in this country.”
The Cricket World Cup is taking place in England and Wales from May 30 to July 15, with one of the two fixtures at the London Stadium set to feature England. A crowd of 66,000 could watch the match – a figure that represents an increase of almost 40,000 on the capacity of Lord’s.
The addition of the London Stadium would increase the number of venues in the tournament from 11 to 12, with Lord’s, The Oval and Old Trafford already confirmed as locations.
While classed as a multi-purpose arena, the London Stadium is mainly used by English Premier League football club West Ham United, which relocated to the venue at the start of the 2016-17 season.