It has been a week since tickets for the first three matches of the Tri-Nation ODI series at Providence which runs from June 3-7 went on sale at the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) office at Bourda and the Guyana National Stadium on the East Bank and tickets are going like hot Jubilee bakes.
International cricket returns to Guyana for the first time in over three years since West Indies beat Pakistan by 37 runs at Providence in the second ODI of a five-match series and Head Curator Wazim Habib says the ground should in top shape by the time the series starts.
On Friday June 3 West Indies face number three ranked South Africa, before facing five-time World Cup Champions and number one ranked Australia on Sunday June 5. Australia battle South Africa on Tuesday June 7. All the games are Day/Night encounters and commence at 13:00hrs. Gates open at 11:00hrs.
The Stadium at Providence was constructed for the 2007 cricket World Cup and has hosted two Tests and 13 ODIs. Preparations for next month’s ODIs are ongoing.
Australia, South Africa and host West Indies have all included three spinners in their teams in anticipation of the slow nature of not only the Providence pitch but also those throughout the region.
Although South Africa have played three ODIs in Guyana including the very first one at Providence in the 2007 World Cup when they beat Sri Lanka by a runs despite four wickets in four balls from Lasith Malinga, they have never played West Indies in an ODI in Guyana.
Australia’s last ODI in Guyana was 17 years ago in 1999 when Steve Waugh made an unbeaten 72 in a game which ended in controversial tie when the crowd invaded the Bourda ground. The anticipation and excitement levels are expected to rise during the final week leading up to what should the pulsating matches and capacity crowds.
The venue which can accommodate 15,000, has seen work being done in the Green Stands and also to replace the seats in a section of the Orange Stands.
Tickets cost $2,000 for the Party Stand which will take over the entire Grass Mound with music and drink bars. The Orange stand cost $3,000 while the Red & Green Stands cost $4,000. Car passes cost $1,000 and there are no reserved tickets. Ticket holders will be seated on a ‘first come first served’ basics.
The International cricket games are a Jubilee bonus and visitors here for Guyana’s 50th Anniversary celebrations could extended their stay to see the matches. Tickets are also being sold on-line those who buy tickets overseas will be given a bar code and the tickets presented to them in Guyana.