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Two spectacular opening ceremonies
Two grand opening ceremonies in host countries Australia and New Zealand on the evening of 12 February will kick-off the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015. While the event in Australia will take place in Melbourne, Christchurch will stage New Zealand’s opener.
Melbourne’s celebrations at Sidney Myer Music Bowl will include World Cup players and former cricket greats, a fireworks display, and music and cultural performances.
John Eren, the Victorian minister for tourism, sport and major events, has said that residents of Melbourne and international visitors have the opportunity to “attend this once-in-a-generation event” at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl.
Attendance in the opening ceremony is free, with tickets available on a first come, first served basis.
Christchurch’s free-to-attend opener at North Hagley Park is expected to feature New Zealand’s cricketing legends such as Sir Richard Hadlee, popular performers including Sol3 Mio and Hayley Westenra, and a special focus on how the city was rebuilt after earthquakes. The latter will see a 100-member choir performing as well.
Included in the celebrations is a symbolic game of backyard cricket, a great Kiwi tradition, showcasing local cricket teams and other entertainers. This is being dubbed ‘Come and play in my backyard’.
A cultural event co-produced by Ngai Tahu and a spectacular fireworks display are part of the evening programs as the cricketing world’s most exciting tournament gets underway.
Therese Walsh, who heads New Zealand’s Cricket World Cup, has said the events planned would “appeal to all ages” and give residents of Christchurch a chance to “celebrate their city’s important role in the tournament”.