Kolkata: Around 4,000 underprivileged children from the city and suburbs lit up L block of the otherwise vacant Eden Gardens for the first day of India’s second Test against New Zealand here on Friday.
All of them were at the stadium for the first time.
“Eden is so big. I never realised it on television,” is how Achinta Sarkar reacted when asked how he liked being at the iconic venue.
India skipper Virat Kohli (9) getting out cheaply in the first session was a big letdown for most of them. India managed 239/7 at stumps on the first day.
“Virat got out. I am so sad. But I am watching cricket so close for the first time. I have asked for permission from my supervisor if I can stay till the end of the day,” said Raju Kundu, who came from Howrah.
A group of girls sat together enjoying the game. Smita, who studies in class IV and is from Liluah, said: “It is great fun. This is my first time. And I am enjoying thoroughly.”
Kids came from Howrah, Hooghly, North and South 24 Parganas and Kolkata, under an initiative taken by Lions Club and supported by the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) to promote the sport among the kids.