Cricket Australia has announced that Geraldton will host the 2018 Toyota Australian Country Cricket Championships (ACCC).
Geraldton, located more than 400 kilometres north of Perth on Western Australia’s coastline, will host the event for the first time from Friday 5 January to Saturday 13 January 2018.
Last year’s tournament was played in Wollongong, New South Wales, while the most recent edition of the tournament played in Western Australia was in Bunbury in the 2010-11 season.
Cricket Australia Executive General Manager of Game and Market Development, Andrew Ingleton, said:
“The Toyota Australian Country Cricket Championships are a great celebration of country cricket, providing Australia’s best regional players with the opportunity to test their skills at a high level of competition,” Mr Ingleton said.
“Regional areas continue to produce quality cricketers, from the great Sir Donald Bradman to current Australian star Josh Hazlewood, and previous country championships players including Andy Bichel, Michael Bevan and Shaun Tait.
“Last year’s Men’s Player of the Championships, Ben Pengelley, is now a South Australia rookie and representing the Cricket Australia XI at the JLT One-Day Cup, which highlights the Pathway that exists at this tournament for regional players wanting to push through the ranks of Australian cricket.
“We look forward to taking this event to Geraldton for the first time, and to working with the City of Greater Geraldton and all players, officials and volunteers to ensure this event is a great success."
Western Australia Cricket Association CEO, Ms Christina Matthews, said:
"Cricket has seen some fantastic talent come out of regional WA, so it's important for the sport to take the game back to the country where possible.
"This is a great opportunity for Geraldton to showcase its great facilities and for Australia's best male and female country cricketers to showcase their skills.
"We look forward to welcoming all teams to WA and Geraldton in January for what we're sure will be a memorable edition of this tournament."
City of Greater Geraldton Mayor, Shane Van Styn, said:
“We’re over the moon to be named as the host for next year’s tournament. It’s a massive sixer for us,” he said.
“Geraldton is continuing to establish itself as a destination of choice and we have got some runs on the board hosting different events and it’s great that we are continuing to attract them.
“This has hit off a great relationship between the City, the WACA and Cricket Australia, and we hope that we can work with them to bring even more exciting cricket events to our region.”