The US city of Indianapolis, known for its world-class infrastructure and hosting of international sporting events, is now building a cricket stadium and plans to invite top cricket teams from across the globe.
Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard Tuesday said he was planning to host the United States Amateur Cricketing Championship next year at the new stadium.
"After that we will be searching opportunities to bring major teams from around the world. Cricket is not exceptionally strong in the US right now. I need to change that. When people around the world think of cricket, I want them to think of Indianapolis," he told a meeting of business leaders organised here by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
Hyderabad, which has a sister city pact with Indianapolis, was the first stop of the mayor and other business leaders.
Pointing out that Indianapolis already has a cricket field, Ballard said they were building another one.
"This is our commitment to international sports. We want to send signals to the world that Indianapolis is a place that you need to be looking at. We adapt to everything, we receive everybody and we are an extremely inclusive city," said the mayor, who is leading a business delegation on a week-long visit to India.
Ballard said Indianapolis hosts the Indianapolis 500, the largest single-day sporting event in the world, in May every year. He also explained how the city was transformed with bike trails and waking access. The city currently has 75 miles of bike trails which will be extended to 200 miles by 2015 enabling people to go around the city on bicycles.
The mayor pointed out that young professionals in the US want bicycles as an alternative mode of transport.