About Mangaung Oval, Bloemfontein
Located in Bloemfontein, capital of Free State province, Goodyear Park is a spectator-friendly ground, with the sizeable grass embankment on the eastern side especially popular with spectators. It is part of a wonderful sporting complex, covering a massive city block that includes facilities of international standard for athletics, rugby, hockey, cricket, tennis and swimming.
Formerly known by several names, such as Chevrolet Park, Goodyear Park and Springbok Park, it is more commonly known by its sponsor’s name. The Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein holds a capacity of twenty thousand, which involves large stands and plenty of grassy areas where spectators can come and enjoy the game while cooking up on a grill for themselves. All three formats have been played at this venue - with the ODIs taking place first in 1992, followed by the Tests in ‘99 and eventually the shortest format in 2010.
The Mangaung Oval played a significant role in South African Test history. Allan Donald, who played for several years as a Free State cricketer, became the first South African to take 300 Test wickets here against New Zealand in 2000. This venue is also a witness to one of the best-ever knocks put on display, by none other than the former South African captain, Hansie Cronje, when he smashed 251 against the touring Australians in 1994. Bloemfontein was also the place where Netherlands' Feiko Kloppenburg and Klaas-Jan van Noortwijk scored a century in the same game to beat Namibia, thereby sealing their only win in the 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup.