The Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RCSF) has revealed that the country’s new national cricket venue will open next month, with a series of special events set to mark the occasion.

The multi-purpose venue will be established as an international standard cricket ground and run as a not-for-profit stadium, featuring a host of modern facilities such as a restaurant, meeting rooms and a bar.

In addition, the venue will have free HIV-testing facilities, which will support the ongoing battle against the disease in Rwanda.

Work on the project only began in June of last year and although some reports in November suggested that building work would be finished as early as March this year, next month’s confirmed opening date represents a quick turnaround time for construction companies working on the venue.

In a statement, the RCSF said: “The intention was never to create a cricket stadium in the conventional sense, but to build a unique platform for promoting reconciliation.

“Upon completion of the stadium, RCSF will transition from a construction project to a charity called Cricket Builds Hope; an initiative that will use cricket as a vehicle for social change.

“Through its network of ambassadors, Cricket Builds Hope will leverage the power of cricket to educate, inspire, and mobilise people in developing countries to overcome their greatest challenges and be agents for change in their communities.”

The RCSF will organise a week of events to celebrate the official opening date on October 28.

The highlight of the week will be a Twenty20 match between a Rwanda XI, captained by RCSF patron and cricket legend Brian Lara, and an All Stars XI led by fellow patron and former England captain Michael Vaughan.

Image: Mugisha Don de Dieu