Ballarat attracts another January sporting event

Australia’s best male junior cricketers will call Ballarat home for a week in January 2024.

The City of Ballarat has secured the rights to host the Cricket Australia National Under 17 Male Championships – a week-long carnival of cricket featuring 30 matches between states and territories from around Australia.

The event is expected to attract about 450 people for the week and contribute more than $550,000 to the local economy.

It will be held from 4-11 January, with all of the 50-over matches to be held on City of Ballarat facilities.

The new addition to the sports events calendar follows the recent announcement of Ballarat hosting the Bowls Victoria 2024 Regions Sides Championships on 13 and 14 January.

The AusCycling Road National Championships will be held concurrently on 3-7 January, making for an action-packed start to the year.

City of Ballarat Mayor, Cr Des Hudson said Ballarat’s reputation as a sports events destination continued to grow in leaps and bounds.

Ballarat also hosted the School Sport Australia 15 Years and Under Australian Football Championships in July, featuring many of the same facilities that will be used for the cricket tournament.

“We are thrilled that Cricket Australia has selected Ballarat as the host for such an important cricket event,” Cr Hudson said.

“I genuinely believe the surfaces of our football and cricket ovals are some of the best in Australia and being able to continually attract events of this calibre show why we have invested significantly over the years.

“Being able to host the best male junior cricketers in Australia is great for the sport in Ballarat and I encourage people to head along and maybe catch a glimpse of our future national heroes in action.

“To have so many visitors in town for the week is great and I’m sure our accommodation providers and hospitality businesses will benefit from the event.

More than 150 players from the National Championships have gone on to play Test Cricket for Australia, with several becoming Australian test captains.

The City of Ballarat will work closely with the Ballarat Cricket Association and local clubs regarding ground availability and pitch maintenance throughout the tournament.

Securing the event relates closely to Goal 2 in the Council Plan 2021-2025: A healthy connected and inclusive community.

Cricket Australia’s General Manager, Events and Operations, Joel Morrison said Cricket Australia was excited to bring the Under 17 Male National Championships to Ballarat.

“The carnival will be hosted across a range of fantastic venues in January and we look forward to seeing some of Australia’s best young players perform at them,” he said.

“Ballarat is an iconic city and we are looking forward to showcasing all that the region has to offer to those traveling to championships from around Australia and across Victoria.”

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