November 13, 2000

World Youth tournament for Australasia

New Zealand is to share the hosting of the next Under-19 World Youth Cricket Cup with Australia.

The tournament is to be held in the season of 2001-02 after the decision of the International Cricket Council (ICC) at its meeting in Nairobi last month to award the event to the Australasia region.

One section each will be held in Australia and New Zealand. They will each host a semi-final and Australia will hold the final.

It will be the first World Youth Cup to be fully funded by the ICC as the result of the recent television marketing agreements it had signed with World Sport and NewsCorp.

"We will share the games around New Zealand," New Zealand Cricket (NZC) chief executive Christopher Doig said at a media briefing in Christchurch.

This was in contrast to the CricInfo Women's World Cup starting later this month, which was all being held in Christchurch.

The reason for the difference was simple, Doig said.

NZC had to fund the tournament by itself and it wanted to play it where it knew the event would be supported and to make use of the facilities available at Lincoln University.

The tournament, and its commercial sponsorship by CricInfo would get a good demonstration of how major cricket events could be covered on the Internet with its video streaming of matches, of audio and visual commentaries and regular news updates.

Doig was confident the introduction of the BIL Oval with its new pavilion and surroundings would become an important part of New Zealand cricket's future.

NZC was in discussion with Lincoln University about developing a third ground at the complex.

Doig said that with three grounds the University could become a tournament venue which with its own accommodation and all facilities, and the good wickets it provides, could be a fundamental part of the development of the game.

Canterbury Cricket Association chief executive Tony Murdoch confirmed that the CCA was in discussion with Lincoln to revive the Universities' Cricket Tournament by utilising the facilities at Lincoln and the better weather conditions now possible in April.

"It could be right at the cutting edge as a practice and playing facility," Murdoch said.