ICC U15 Cricket 8's Tournament in Suva, Fiji
ICC Development (East Asia-Pacific) Media Release
Following a series of important pre-tournament meetings between ICC and Cricket Fiji officials it has been confirmed that the tournament will be staged on three pitches at the Albert Park grounds in Suva, Fiji from the 24th to 29th of January 2007.
This is the second ICC U15 tournament held in the EAP region after the first such tournament was held in Melbourne in 2005, which PNG won, Vanuatu 2nd and Fiji finished 3rd.
Competing countries in the week long event will include Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Japan, Vanuatu, Samoa, Tonga and the Cook Islands, making the EAP U/15 Cricket 8's a truly international tournament.
"We arrived in Suva on Monday evening and have since carried out an inspection of facilities and met with key officials and potential sponsors as preparations for this important tournament progress.
Although, we have some concerns with the current state of Albert Park we are encouraged by the support of the Suva City Council and their desire to have the playing grounds in suitable order for this exciting international tournament. To this end, we anticipate this event will help leave a positive legacy for sporting facilities in Suva" said ICC EAP Regional Development Manager Matt Weisheit
"Cricket Fiji has a proud and rich cricket history and we are impressed by the commitment of Cricket Fiji officials to stage a very successful U15 tournament, which will provide an invaluable cricket and life experience for the best young players in our region" added Mr Weisheit.
Cricket Fiji Chairman Colonel Ilaisa Kacisolomone was looking forward to the event which kick-starts a busy year for cricket in Fiji.
"We are making a real focus of developing sustainable junior programs in Fiji and hosting this tournament gives us a terrific leverage to take the sport forward. This tournament is great for the EAP cricket community but also for the wider Suva community, and to date we have received a promising response from the corporate sector, but it is essential we secure further support" Colonel Kacisolomone said.
"The U15 tournament is undoubtedly a feature on the 2007 Fijian sporting calendar and signifies the start of a very busy year for Fijian cricket. We are also participating in the ICC World Cricket League Division 3 for our Men's team, the ICC EAP U19 World Cup qualifying tournament, the South Pacific Games as well as our eventful domestic competition" added Colonel Kacisolomone.
ICC EAP and Cricket Fiji officials are keen to ensure this event provides significant benefits for the development of the sport in Fiji and value adds to the Suva community and Fiji's sporting calendar.
"Given this tournament's goal to promote junior participation in sport, we are actively sourcing government and corporate partnerships to complement the genuine exposure and media interest this tournament will generate for cricket and Fiji, both locally and internationally," said Mr Weisheit.
The EAP U/15 Cricket 8's will be played under modified rules including eight players per team, the incorporation of a 'double zone' behind the bowler that allows double runs to be scored, and 20 over long innings. Teams will play two matches per day.