Members of England's Barmy Army were in full voice at the
University Oval in Dunedin yesterday after a quiet start to
the cricket test against New Zealand. Photo by Craig
A visit from the Indian cricket team seems unlikely but
Otago Cricket Association chief executive Ross Dykes is certain
Dunedin will get another test next summer.
Mr Dykes feels the University Oval has thoroughly established
its status as an international venue after hosting its fifth
test, which ended in a draw between New Zealand and England
India, the biggest drawcard in world cricket, and the West
Indies are touring next season. The West Indies will play
three tests but it appears likely India will play only two.
''I'd be very, very surprised if we didn't get a test,'' Mr
Dykes said yesterday.
''We'd like two, but that might be too ambitious. We'd love
to see India here, but to be honest we're more likely to get
the West Indies.
''The important thing is we've established that we can run a
good test match in Dunedin. I think we've secured ourselves a
regular position on the circuit.''
New Zealand Cricket said 22,188 people attended the
University Oval test, including the rained-out first day.
About 8000 attended the test against South Africa, which also
lost a day to bad weather, a year ago.
NZC keeps the gate takings, but the OCA keeps profits from
pourage and a percentage of concessions. Mr Dykes is
anticipating a ''pretty good profit'' once all the figures
He was ''very grumpy'' on the scheduled opening day of the
test, which was spoiled by rain, but finished the week in a
''We had good numbers through the gate, and New Zealand did
well and I think gained some credibility.
''The pitch was of good quality. It was great for batting and
I think that's a credit to the groundsman, Tom Tamati.
''Our visitors loved the ground, and the Longroom. The whole
intimacy of the University Oval appeals to everybody. And
we've had English supporters saying they have enjoyed not
being harassed by security.''
The test will be remembered for Hamish Rutherford's
remarkable innings of 171 on debut. Mr Dykes said the young
Otago opener's performance was ''absolutely wonderful''.
He was also pleased to see Neil Wagner grabbing wickets,
Brendon McCullum captaining New Zealand on his home ground
for the first time, and former Otago players Jonathan Trott
and Steven Finn doing well for England.
Barmy Army tour organiser Giles Wellington said the group had
a ''fantastic'' week in Dunedin, despite a few patches of bad
weather and England's ''perilous'' start to the test.
Barmy Army members would be making their way up the South
Island in the next few days, before congregating in
Wellington for the next test.
''We've been well looked after and enjoyed Dunedin very much.
It was a good test match in the end, although we thought we
were in a bit of trouble at one stage.''
Dunedin police were impressed with the behaviour of cricket
supporters throughout the week.