Jenny Roesler at the 2009 Women's World Cup March 21, 2009

An intimate area for the World Cup final

  The SCG is staging a press conference for the England and New Zealand captains ahead of Sunday’s final


Suzie Bates in the pool © Getty Images
 
The SCG is staging a press conference for the England and New Zealand captains ahead of Sunday’s final. But after a season of cricket, there is anything but the sport going on in the buzzing arena of football in the adjacent stadium, and tennis on the courts. Even the New Zealand girls are in the swimming pool – admittedly after a hard morning training.

It was at first a surprise that the women had been overlooked for having their final at New South Wales’ premier venue. A grand cauldron, if not quite the MCG, it is impressive enough with a ring of green seats sweeping round the ground.

But the reasoning was that North Sydney Oval provides a more intimate arena, with the audience closer to the action. At the conference, New Zealand captain Haidee Tiffen stated she preferred to play at a smaller ground rather than one that could potentially be “hollow”. The TV cameras are also already in position for the final at North Sydney – transferring them to the SCG would cost just too much to warrant the switch.

The ground has looked good on television already and with a crowd of a few thousand expected tomorrow, the stage is set for a thrilling final. Had Australia been in contention, the numbers may have been even larger and the local media interest – which had started off strongly – even greater.

As it is, England and New Zealand have been receiving strong support from around the globe in the most televised tournament yet for the women’s game and everyone is hoping for a tight game tomorrow. If both sides play to their potential then there is every chance that this will be a great final to remember.

Jenny Roesler is a former assistant editor at Cricinfo

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