Indoor cricket coup for Port Macquarie, with Trans-Tasman series coming to town

Big tournament: Todd Ruttley and Gerrit Wilkin can’t wait for Trans-Tasman indoor cricket to come to Port Macquarie. Pic: MATT McLENNANTHE best indoor cricketers from Australia and New Zealand will converge on Port Macquarie in September for some massive bragging rights, but the town could be in line for even bigger tournaments in the years to come.

More than 200 of the best players and coaches will do battle at the Hastings’ new facility, the Ark Sports Centre, for the Trans-Tasman Indoor Cricket Championships from September 9-11. Open and under 22 men and women will the Port Macquarie courts as they use the tournament as preparation for the 2017 World Cup in Dubai.

It’s the latest huge step forward for the facility which threw open its doors at the end of last year, and it’s undoubtedly the biggest news of its short life. Port Macquarie was on a short list of eight locations for the tournament. Todd Ruttley and GerritWilkin nominated their centre before the courts were down.

Ruttley and Wilkin are thrilled their centre has been chosen, but they have their sights set on even bigger goals. The pair have a World Cup on their bucket list, which they hope to tick off in the next five years.

To do that, the centre will have to expand from two courts to four, and Ruttley looked forward to that happening.

He wasn’t getting ahead of himself, though. He is focusing on doing a good job in hosting the Trans-Tasman series.

He couldn’t wait to make a good impression on the Kiwi and Australian players.

“For our centre to be asked to nominate before being built, it’s blown me away,” he said.

“And for us to get it in our first year of trade, it’s mind boggling.”

Wilkin agreed, and he looked forward to Port Macquarie being on the lips of the touring teams.

“We’re going to put Port Macquarie on the map in New Zealand,” he said.

Spectators will be treated to some fantastic indoor cricket. Wilkin said the space for viewing is what got Port Macquarie the nod over the other possible venues.

“There’s room for spectators,” he said.

Matches will be streamed across the world.

It isn’t just the on-court action that has the Ark pair excited. Ruttley and Wilkin anticipated some spine-tingling stuff off it, too.

Ruttley anticipates a haka from the Kiwis.

“I get goosebumps when I think about it,” he said.

“How good would that be?”

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