03 June 2014
Boxing Day Test for Christchurch’s Hagley Oval
Hagley Oval was awarded both the Boxing Day Test against Sri Lanka and the opening One Day International against the same opponents
Christchurch’s Hagley Oval is poised to host New Zealand’s first Boxing Day Test in more than a decade
Starved of international cricket since the 2011 earthquake, Christchurch makes a return to New Zealand Cricket’s international programme this summer, with Hagley Oval being awarded both the Boxing Day Test against Sri Lanka and the opening One Day International against the same opponents.
Hagley Oval will later host the opening match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, also against Sri Lanka.
Another highlight of the ANZ International Series 2014-15 is confirmation of Tauranga’s Bay Oval as the country’s newest international arena.
NZC Head of Cricket Lindsay Crocker said he was delighted to announce the return of international cricket to Canterbury, and to confirm Hagley Oval as the country’s eighth Test venue.
“Bringing international cricket back to Christchurch was always a priority for NZC,” said Crocker. “And we feel the Boxing Day Test was a good way to celebrate what will be a very special landmark.”
NZC opted to schedule the Test matches in the holiday period this summer, in order to allow New Zealand an uninterrupted run of ODIs ahead of CWC 2015.
“While our inclination is to play short-form cricket in the holiday period, on this occasion our preference is to play the Tests early so that we can maximise ODI opportunities ahead of the CWC.”
New Zealand will test itself against three strong ODI sides at home this summer, as first South Africa, and then Sri Lanka and Pakistan visit.
Between the South African and Sri Lankan series they will travel to the United Arab Emirates to play Pakistan in three Tests, five ODIs and a Twenty20.
“The original agreement with Sri Lanka provided for a five-match ODI series and two T20s - but by mutual agreement, again with the CWC in mind, we chose to play seven ODIs,” said Crocker.
“Three very competitive opponents, the chance to play at all our World Cup venues, and to take the team around the country – we think this offers a good lead-in to the CWC, while still maintaining our commitment to Test cricket.”
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