Turf football with a view at The Cage
There’s a minute left on the clock. The floodlights are lit and the rain begins to trickle in through a green mesh, covering an otherwise open roof. A player in a Manchester United t-shirt passes the ball to his teammate, also in a red jersey. GOAL! Celebrations break out as the four teammates huddle up and you’d imagine that they’d have won the football World Cup. But, these are just common scenes at The Cage. Even as late as 12 am on a Wednesday night.
With matches on until midnight and maybe a little past usual gaming hours, Coimbatore’s newest football ground, The Cage, is a crowd puller. Set with an astroturf of UEFA standards, the 50 mm grass field comes padded with a layer of sand and turf beads to protect those knees. But what makes this soccer arena unique, is the view of the city it offers from the fourth floor of the bustling Brookefields Mall.
Picking up pace after having launched three months ago, partner Vishnu Prabhu Raja credits the sudden spurt in enthusiasm to the ongoing Premier Futsal League. Only the second soccer turf in the city, Vishnu tells us that the idea came about as part of a discussion among his school friends and partners Ashwin M Anand, Adarsh Murugan and Gamyanth Shren Ramanan. “We were looking at a place where we could hang out and also maybe also play some sport like we used to back in school. The Cage is also about creating a community space for football enthusiasts.” The caged 70 feet x 35 feet structure that comes fit with 12-feet high floodlights has a space around it and can accommodate a small audience. And while you’re at it, you could also try your hand at cricket. In the nets, of course. Equipped with a cricket bowling machine and a 22-yard cement pitch, The Cage also has a steady stream of loyal cricketing enthusiasts.
Given that a large section of football enthusiasts plan get-togethers ahead of Premier League matches, the 24-year-old entrepreneurs are looking at creating a screening area within the arena, which will be operational within the month. “What better way to watch a match than with fellow fans in the open,” Vishnu says, with a smile. With work on the interior design of the arena currently on, one can soon expect to find a Football League, a cricket-inspired graffiti wall and the stairwell leading up to the turf decked up with club colours. “It is up to you, what score you’ll be keeping,” says Vishnu, as he signs off, adding that The Cage also caters to private parties.
At Brookefields Mall. Open on weekdays from 3 pm and on weekends from 11 am. Rs 1,000 per hour. Details: 8428005555