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Queenstown Mayor delighted by West Indies visit

Mayor Jim Boult has expressed delight at the West Indies cricket team’s upcoming visit to Queenstown.

West Indies will play two matches against a New Zealand A side at John Davies Oval in late November. It will be Queenstown’s first visit from a top-level cricket team since 2014.

Mayor Boult says the matches would prove a welcome, and fun, boost to the town and its economy.

“One of the ways Queenstown Lakes District Council is supporting the local economy is by bringing events to town.

“We’ve had our fair share of disappointments recently, such as missing out on both the New Zealand Golf Open and hosting teams for the Rugby Championship, so hosting one of world cricket’s top teams feels especially rewarding.”

The John Davies Oval, at the Queenstown Events Centre, is widely recognised as one of world cricket’s most spectacular grounds. It has drawn wide praise, including from cricketers such as former England Captain Sir Alastair Cook.

Mayor Boult says the teams would also work with local clubs and cricketers during their time in Queenstown.

“Cricket has been blossoming here in Queenstown, with local clubs seeing record turnout across all age groups. It’s the perfect time to be building a relationship with New Zealand Cricket, and the ties being made during this series will last long into the future.

“This is just the beginning of high level cricket returning to the district.”

NZC chief executive David White said his organisation was delighted to schedule the two West Indies warm-up games in Queenstown, particularly given the difficult times the resort town has experienced.

“The John Davies Oval is one of the most beautiful grounds in the world and I’m certain, after managed isolation, the West Indies will enjoy the change of scenery and atmosphere.

“These are important games for the tourists, as is the week of training ahead of them, and should provide a good spectacle for cricket fans in the region.”

QLDC sports and recreation manager Simon Battrick said the visit showed a welcome commitment from New Zealand Cricket, particularly in the wake of Queenstown’s recent golf and rugby misses.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to showcase international cricket in Queenstown,” says Simon.

“It will provide not just a strong economic return, but also an opportunity for the community to see international cricket players up close.”

On Tuesday, all West Indies players and support staff returned negative day three COVID-19 tests while quarantining in Christchurch’s managed isolation facility. As per government guidelines, further tests will be required on days six and 12 of their managed isolation stay.

West Indies Queenstown matches:

West Indies vs. New Zealand A, 3-Day Match, Friday 20 – Sunday 22 November 2020, 11.00am

West Indies vs. New Zealand A, 4-Day Match, Thursday 26 – Sunday, 29 November 2020, 11.00am

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