Dear Hong Kong government,
I am so very disappointed in you. The cricket sixes have been around since 1992, and have been a tournament looked forward to by many, not only in Hong Kong but those around the world who watch it via television and the internet. It’s become arguably one of the best annual sporting tournaments in Hong Kong, and many tourists and locals alike would have fond memories of flowing beer, ridiculous costumes and flying cricket balls, alongside the warm atmosphere, from the ever-musical Sri Lankan fan area, to the corporate and private boxes for the more… ‘posh’ crowds.
For those who don’t know, the cricket sixes is a tournament featuring 12 teams from around the world including an ‘All Stars’ team. They play a sixes format in which:
- There are 6 players per team
- Each player (except for the wicketkeeper) bowls one 6 ball over (except for in the final, where they bowl 8 ball overs)
- Batsmen retire ‘not out’ on 31 runs – this is to try and encourage the goal of hitting 6 sixes and get 36!
…among other rules which I won’t go into. Anyway, this year is the first year since 2000 in which there won’t be a sixes tournament. The reason it is not going ahead this year is because the Hong Kong government rejected the HKCA’s funding application to the Mega Events Fund, as well as a lack of private sector backing.
I just don’t get it though. The 2012 sixes was watched by “over 127 million households on the Indian subcontinent, across Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Australia and South Africa, as well as being packaged for distribution in North America, the United Kingdom, Europe and China.” Surely, surely this has to be good value for money, as far as tournaments go… I don’t think the HK Rugby Sevens even has that wide of a broadcast! (Though I could be wrong, I wasn’t able to find any facts on this.)
I’d really like to know what won events out over the sixes… probably some inane week-long ‘Lets build 500 more football fields!’ event, because everyone knows we need more of them. I’m not saying the government doesn’t know how to allocate it’s money, I’m just – okay, maybe I am. I mean, there’s talk that Singapore or somewhere else will snap up this opportunity to host their own sixes tournament, and who knows, maybe they’ll end up taking it away for good!
This is not good for Hong Kong cricket, not at all. I hope your wallets are happy, government.
I just hope cricket don’t lose out in the long run.
Note: Juuuuust in case… the views expressed above are mine and do not represent those of the national cricket teams or the HKCA