St Kevin’s College’s new multi-sport turf was officially opened last Friday.
The turf includes a set of specialist cricket nets, a basketball and netball court that meets international standards and a multisport surface marked out as a hockey practice turf and futsal court.
To celebrate the occasion, the school held a ceremony during which Bishop Emeritus of Dunedin Colin Campbell blessed the turf, and Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher cut the ribbon to decree the facility open.
It was attended by the entire school, as well as several other guests who had been involved in the project.
Speaking to the gathered crowd, St Kevin’s College principal Paul Olsen said the previous surface was almost 30 years old and the replacement was the culmination of four years of planning, preparing and financing by a dedicated team led by St Kevin’s head of sport Craig Smith.
He said the school was committed to sharing the facilities with the community. It has a partnership with North Otago Cricket to use the nets and junior hockey teams from Maheno and Oamaru Intermediate School were already using the turf.
The first official use of the turf was a game of futsal between St Kevin’s College staff and Oamaru police.
After scores were tied 2-2 at the end of regulation time, the police team dug deep to score in overtime.
Senior Sergeant Jason McCoy, who scored the match-winning goal, was named the player of the day, showing a good turn of pace.