MCG to host Test series opener - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

MCG to host Test series opener

By Adam Cooper 19/04/2007 07:44:56 PM Comments (0)

Victorian cricket officials are confident the MCG can again attract a massive crowd when the famous ground hosts a Test series opener next summer.

For the first time in a decade, the MCG will host the first Test of a series, when Australia play India on Boxing Day.

Although the Indians will struggle to build the fanfare in the lead-up to the match from last summer, when Shane Warne made his last appearance at his home ground, officials are hopeful Victorian fans will be salivating for cricket come Christmas.

The MCG will host the first Test of a series for the first time since 1997-98, when Australia drew with South Africa.

Last year's MCG Test drew huge crowds over three days, but with the Ashes already regained by Australia, the dead rubber status was saved by Warne's pending retirement.

"It is a different focus this time being the first one around," Cricket Victoria chief executive Tony Dodemaide said.

"It was a big one last year with Warney's position, but the series itself was already decided.

"This way it has added extra impetus in that there's all that anticipation being the first one of the series and setting the tone.

"It's great for us, we're very happy with it."

The Australia-India series will start later in the summer than recent Test series played in Australia, because of India's commitments at home in November-December.

The MCG will also host its first Twenty20 international next summer, when Australia and India play on February 1.

The ground was allocated the fixture as part of Cricket Australia's rotational basis, and also to compensate for denying Australia's biggest ground a tri-series final.

The three tri-series finals will be played in Sydney, Brisbane and, if needed, Adelaide.

CA chief executive James Sutherland said there was an appetite for Twenty20 cricket in Melbourne after the MCG attracted a crowd of about 30,000 in last summer's domestic final between Victoria and Tasmania.

Dodemaide said the Twenty20 clash balanced out the loss of the tri-series final.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2021 AAP

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