Local cricket fans will miss out on the opportunity to see the Cricket World Cup during the trophy’s tour of New Zealand, with Oamaru not on the agenda.
The trophy visited Nelson yesterday and is in Greymouth today before visiting Christchurch tomorrow, Timaru on Sunday and returning to Christchurch on Monday.
The tour will then move on to Queenstown on Tuesday, Dunedin on Wednesday and end its journey in Invercargill on Thursday.
Cricket Word Cup Media and PR manager Philip Clark said first class cricket venues were the priority, and, despite wanting to visit other towns, the busy schedule did not allow the tour to come to Oamaru.
“There’s only so much we can do in the three week period,” he said.
“There’s a lot to set up. We’ve got three weeks on the road with one stop per day and with the established first class cricket venues, there’s only so much we can do in that time.”
North Otago cricket chairman Peter Cameron said it was disappointing that the trophy would not be making its way to North Otago.
“Obviously we’re disappointed it’s not coming to Oamaru,” he said.
“Recommendations were made by Otago Cricket to the Cricket World Cup authority but I think they’ve decided by their own volition where the trophy will go.”
Clark said the amount of equipment involved in the tour also caused a rigid agenda.
“We’d love to visit places like Oamaru, but it’s not a nimble thing,” he said.
“We have a truck and trailer unit which folds out into a 72 sqm exhibition zone, three large inflatable skills stations, the Alternative Commentary Caravan and various display elements. It arrives the night before and there’s a lot involved.
“We’d love to be taking the trophy to more towns around the country but there is only so much we can do in three weeks and these events do require a significant amount of set-up.”
Following the success of the under-20 football world cup’s visit to Oamaru – which also boasted plenty of bells and whistles – it seems a shame that local cricket fans will be unable to pay the coveted prize a visit, and, if first class venues are a priority, why were Waiheke Island and Greymouth on the schedule?
By JAMES FORD
PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES – Oamaru will miss out of the Cricket World Cup trophy tour.