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Talent magnet

Home to some of New Zealand's best talent, Seddon Park is set for fireworks

Marc Swain-Rogatski
04-Nov-2014
A wide-angle view of the picturesque Seddon Park in Hamilton, New Zealand v England, 1st Test, Hamilton, March 8, 2008

Seddon Park has produced plenty of high-scoring ODI contests  •  Getty Images

Hamiltonians will relish the World Cup's return to their backyard. In the 1992 World Cup, there were two games played on the ground. The pitch is known to be a good batting track, so expect fireworks from Virat Kohli, Hashim Amla and Brendon McCullum. The ground can seat up to 10,000 and fans from "the city of the future" will surely make this an excellent spectacle.
The venue
Seddon Park in Hamilton is the main ground for cricket. The Northern Districts team represents the majority of the top half of the North Island, excluding Auckland, and as far down as Taumarunui. Seddon Park is a beautiful village cricket-style ground, only five minutes from downtown Hamilton. The park is named after former prime minister Richard John Seddon. A grass embankment runs around three quarters of the ground and behind this is a large hedgerow. The ground has a very welcoming atmosphere for families. Northern Districts Cricket was formed in 1953 and Seddon Park has been used to accommodate a majority of their matches.
Hamilton will get to see six different teams play in the three pool games: an African encounter with South Africa and Zimbabwe, India playing Ireland, followed by Bangladesh's battle with the home team. All three games are day-nighters.
Great matches
New Zealand v Australia, 3rd ODI, Chappell-Hadlee Trophy, February 2007
A batting extravaganza, where nearly 700 runs were racked up. In one of the best games the ground has seen, Matthew Hayden hit a mammoth 181 to lift Australia to 346. However, even this was not enough, as New Zealand put on a show, led by Craig McMillan's 117 and handy fifties from Peter Fulton and McCullum. New Zealand won the thriller with one wicket and three balls remaining. They clinched a rare series whitewash over Australia 3-0.
New Zealand v India, 4th ODI, January 2014
In the exciting recent home series against India, New Zealand were in top form, this time running down India's 278 with 11 balls to spare. A sublime middle-order effort saw Ross Taylor knock up a brilliant 112 not out. New Zealand went an unassailable 3-0 up and went on to win the series 4-0. A loyal New Zealand public started to see a promising team beginning to gel.
Top performers in ODIs
Most runs: Brendon McCullum, 403 at 67.16 | Highest score: Matthew Hayden 181* v New Zealand | Most wickets: Kyle Mills, 9 at 36.55 | Best bowling: Andre Adams 4 for 21 v India
Home team
Always a strong team full of talent, Northern Districts (Knights) have had success in all formats in New Zealand domestic competitions. A particularly strong team in the '90s, they have raised the Plunket Shield seven times, including three times from 2006-07. Hard to miss in their new pink uniforms, the Knights recently qualified for the Champions League T20 in India.