Australian and NSW Blues captain Michael Clarke will be on hand tonight to launch the 2014-15 season for the NSW Blues at Pier One – Walsh Bay
The season will be the biggest one in the history of cricket in this State.
The action starts in 9 days time when the NSW Blues begin their Matador One Day Cup campaign against South Australia on Saturday 4 October.
The tournament will spend its initial week in Brisbane before returning to Sydney on Sunday October 12th for the final two weeks. The Blues will play matches locally against Victoria (North Sydney Oval – Sunday 12th), Western Australia (Drummoyne Oval – Wednesday 15th), Victoria (Drummoyne Oval – Friday 17th) and Tasmania (Drummoyne Oval – Monday 20th).
The NSW Blues will then look to defend their Sheffield Shield crown, with the excitement of matches being played in Wagga Wagga (Victoria – 15-18 February) and Newcastle (Western Australia – 25-28 February).
The Lend Lease Breakers will also be looking to create further history this season, aiming to win their 10th WNCL title in a row, in addition to winning back the T20 crown.
They start their campaign with a WT20 match against the ACT on Friday 10 October at Blacktown International Sportspark.
The KFC T20 Big Bash League kicks in for Sydney fans just before Xmas when the Sydney Sixers take on the Melbourne Renegades on Friday 19 December at the SCG, before the Sydney Thunder start their campaign against the Brisbane Heat on Sunday 21 December at ANZ Stadium.
With South Africa visiting for a one day series followed by the New Year’s Test against India and a Tri-Series against India and England, the International calendar seems full – until you throw in the biggest cricket tournament on the planet! The ICC World Cup plays its first match in Sydney when South Africa take on the West Indies at the SCG on Friday 27 February, with further blockbuster matches scheduled throughout the tournament, including Australia v Sri Lanka on Sunday 8 March.
Minister for Sport and Recreation Stuart Ayres joined Australian Captain Michael Clarke, as well as volunteers and officials to launch the official 2014/15 cricket season:
“Off the back of recent record participation growth, Blues and Breakers success, six men and five women in the respective National Test teams, and record crowds at the Test, ODI and BBL matches, cricket has never been more popular in NSW,” Mr Ayres said.
The Blues will continue this season promoting the NSW Government’s Plan B drink-driving campaign, which says while you can enjoy a drink on a night out, don’t drink drive and you should plan another way to get home – your Plan B – beforehand.
The campaign was supported by the NSW Blues players last season, and they will continue to remind cricket fans to find a safe Plan B this season – through media appearances, online content and grassroots outreach to local and regional cricket clubs.
Minister for Roads and Freight Duncan Gay said the NSW Government’s partnership with Cricket NSW was extremely important in spreading the important road safety message about adopting a Plan B.
“We have a fantastic partnership with Cricket NSW to promote the importance of people finding another way to get home if they are going out drinking, the car is not an option but there are plenty of Plan B’s,” Minister Gay said.
“The Cricket NSW players are top blokes and great ambassadors to deliver this important safety message to remind young men in particular to stay safe on the road.”
Cricket NSW Chief Executive Andrew Jones was excited about the continued association with the NSW Government: “We are extremely fortunate to have such an outstanding partnership with the NSW Government and are delighted to be able to promote the Plan B message again this coming season.
“Research has shown that the campaign against drink driving, involving both enforcement and education has had an effect on reducing the number of drink driving crashes and casualties on our roads and we strongly believe in the importance of continuing to work in this area.”