KUALA LUMPUR – October 31, 2018: The lease for the Kinrara Oval cricket ground expires today but the Malaysian Cricket Association (MCA) has no intention of moving out anytime soon.
“We are ready to go to court to defend the Kinrara Oval,” declared said MCA vice-president Nordin Abdullah today.
“This is our home and we have no plan to move elsewhere. Our stand is to defend the ground as it is important for cricket in this country,” he added.
In a press statement on October 25, developer Perumahan Kinrara Berhad (PKB) insisted that the land on which Kinrara Oval sits be returned to it once the lease expires.
According to PKB, the association knew it would eventually need to find another home.
MCA president Mahinda Vallipuram said the association needs to maintain its home ground because cricket has changed over the past 20 years and is now part of the national agenda.
“This the only world-class cricket field we have now in this country. I beg all relevant parties to sit down and discuss this. This game (cricket) did not reach this far overnight,” he said at a press conference two weeks ago. (Editor’s note: The Bayuemas Oval under the Malaysian Malays Cricket Association also has international standard facilities, including for accommodation of players on training programmes and in fact was built some years earlier than Kinrara. It has hosted foreign clubs here for competition over the years.)
The Malaysian men’s cricket team is ranked 27th in the world while the women are ranked 31st.
A check with the Subang Jaya Municipal Council website shows that it intends to convert the five-acre land which was a green lung area into a commercial site.
It turns out that Kinrara Oval is not the only green lung earmarked for development in Bandar Kinrara, the other being the Kinrara Golf Club, which is almost six times bigger than the cricket ground.
Local residents are now questioning if ultimately there’ll be any green lung left there.
Green lungs are green spaces that act as a balance with development. They serve as environment protector, filtering dust and pollutants, lowering the temperature and reducing soil erosion.
National women’s skipper Winifred Anne Duraisingam said she has a lot of memories linked to the Kinrara Oval.
“This is where I shed my tears and sweat for my country and it saddens me that it is going to close down soon,” said Winifred.
Another national woman player, Christina Nina Baret, echoed Duraisingam’s opinion.
Recently, the Pakistan Cricket Board picked Kinrara Oval as its home ground to play a women’s limited overs series against Australia.