Media ReleasePic (Right): The Sri
Lanka vs New Zealand series will be played at the Central Broward
Regional Park Cricket Stadium (Lauderhill, FL) - File Photo
Sri Lanka and the BLACKCAPS will play a three-match Twenty20 series in
Florida next month to launch a new strategic partnership between USA Cricket and New Zealand Cricket.
Indian property development company, Pearls Infrastructure, is the naming rights sponsor for the matches and the teams will be competing for the Pearls Cup.
The series - the first international cricket matches to be played by
full ICC members in the USA - will take place from May 20-23 in
Lauderhill, Florida, around 30 miles from Miami.
Cricket is the second most popular sport in the world, only behind
football (soccer). With approximately 15-million cricket fans living in
the USA, Gladstone Dainty, USA Cricket President, said on behalf of his
Board of Directors following USA Cricket’s AGM - “The historic event
will provide great exposure for cricket with some of the world’s top
players who will be on show here. USA Cricket has worked hard to bring
this event about and we are very excited about the potential impact of
this series for the growth and development of cricket in the United
Cricket CEO, Donald Lockerbie said the three-match series has been in
the works for some time as part of the new "Destination USA"
initiative. Last November an important strategic partnership was also
made between New Zealand Cricket and USA Cricket to advance the game in
"We believe that in order to grow the game of cricket in the USA - we
need to have the best teams in the world play in our country,” said
Lockerbie. “We want to demonstrate to the American public just how
exciting the T20 format is. Cricket is already popular here but has
lacked major media coverage. This inaugural series is the first step
to reverse this situation."
Lockerbie also pointed out that the last time the sport of cricket made
significant history in the United States was in 1844, when the Canada
vs. USA match was the first international sporting event between two
nations in world history.
New Zealand Cricket CEO, Justin Vaughan added that NZC has long seen
the dynamic potential of cricket in the USA, and made a strategic
decision to offer to partner with USA Cricket; “We have the experience
and capacity to help develop the game of cricket in the USA. We are
looking at ways of helping USA Cricket grow the game both
professionally and at the grassroots. This T20 series is the first of
many initiatives between our two cricket boards and we envisage the
BLACKCAPS playing in the USA on an annual basis."
Infrastructure Managing Director, Mr. M.L Sehjpal says the company is
excited about its involvement in such a ground-breaking event.
“We are delighted to support the endeavors of USA Cricket and New
Zealand Cricket in growing the game in the United States" said
Sajchpal. We are an Indian based company, and whilst having
international interests we are appealing to Indians through a major
common interest and passion, the game of cricket.”
The match series follows on the heels of the ICC World Twenty20 in the
West Indies - with the finals in Barbados on 16th May. Sri Lanka was a
finalist in the 2009 event and is expected to perform well again this
year. Sri Lanka Cricket Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga said, "Our team
and nation is honored to be one of the first two ICC Full Members to be
involved in this historic series. We shall bring our finest team
possible and look to return home with a great experience in the USA,
helping the sport grow swiftly before thousands of American cricket
The BLACKCAPS were semi-finalists in the 2007 ICC World Twenty20 and
made it through to the Super Eight stage of the 2009 event. Their
current team includes many of the world’s leading players. Captain
Daniel Vettori said, “The BLACKCAPS are really excited about the
prospect of playing in Florida. We know the series against Sri Lanka
will be a great advertisement for international cricket to US fans.”
The matches will be played at the Central Broward Regional Park Cricket
Stadium - the only ICC approved cricket stadium in North America, in
Lauderhill, a suburb of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The stadium holds up
to 20,000 and was completed in November 2007.
Matches are scheduled with the inaugural game set for Thursday night
20th May, and Saturday and Sunday afternoons (22nd-23rd May).
Ticket information and pricing will be announced by USA Cricket shortly on its website www.usaca.org.