Cricket coup for city

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Bill Richardson Transport World executive director Joc O'Donnell and events manager Adam Reinsfield show some of the collection to be displayed at the New Zealand Cricket Museum which will be temporarily housed in Invercargill.

CRICKET enthusiasts will be in for a treat in Invercargill this month as the New Zealand Cricket Museum opens its temporary home in the city.

The museum will be hosted at Bill Richardson Transport World and will see the first non-transport-related exhibition at the venue.

Transport World executive director Joc O’Donnell said all the items were being carefully unwrapped and put on display.

It was a big coup for the [cricket] museum to be [temporarily] moved to Invercargill, she said.

“It’s just really nice to be able to offer our visitors a different type of experience here at Transport World. We are conscious that if we want locals to come back then we have to be offering different varieties of collections for them to view. So we’re really happy that it’s come down here and it’s quite fun to be setting up something completely different and to draw in a different audience.”

All items to be displayed have been transported from Wellington while its permanent home at the Basin Reserve undergoes a refurbishment and earthquake strengthening.

It will be the first time the collection will be on display elsewhere since it first occupied the former dining room of the Basin Reserves Museum Stand 31 years ago.

Mrs O’Donnell said the idea to move the museum to Invercargill came after Transport World helped Cricket New Zealand obtain the bat Martin Crowe used to score his final test century at Lords in 1994 from Russell Crowe’s “divorce auction” last year.

“When we did that they talked about how they were going to be making some changes to their museum at the Basin Reserve,” she said.

“So we just sort of did a deal to bring the cricket collection down here for a little while while they were doing their renovations.”

Other highlights to be displayed include the New Zealand’s winning trophy from the 2000 International Cricket Council KnockOut tournament, a string ball made by Australian and New Zealand soldiers in a prisoner-of-war camp in Italy in 1942 and a variety of World Cup memorabilia.

The museum will be officially opened on February 22 by legendary “double All Black” Brian McKechnie who will be the guest of a special evening hosted by Jamie MacKay. It is expected to run until October, with entry to the museum included in tickets bought for Transport World.

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