The Hot Spring T20 Christchurch Black Clash pits New Zealand’s biggest sporting stars against each other in a high-intensity, hugely fun T20 cricket match at Christchurch’s beautiful Hagley Oval on Friday January 25.
Stephen Fleming’s Team Cricket will be defending its honour against Sir Graham Henry’s Team Rugby, with a lifetime of bragging rights on the line for the victors.
Fleming has hand-picked T20 Master Blaster Brendon McCullum to lead the line-up for Team Cricket, while Sir Graham has called upon All Blacks captain Kieran Read – who played premier cricket for Karaka aged just 15 - to lead the upstart Team Rugby’s charge.
Each team will be packed with international sporting superstars keen to show off their talents with bat and ball.
The leather, willow and a fair bit of banter will be flying at Hagley Oval in this summer sizzler.
The Hot Spring T20 Christchurch Black Clash is the brainchild of former Black Caps captain Stephen Fleming and Duco Events founder and director David Higgins.
Loosely based on South Africa’s Nelson Mandela Legacy Cup – a biennial charity cricket match in which the Springboks take on the Proteas – the event will bring together many of the very biggest names in New Zealand sport.
Just over two years ago Stephen approached David and said: “I’ve got this great idea for an event – how do we make it happen?”
David said: “Leave it with me mate. We’ll make it happen.”
In January 2019, it’s happening!
The Hot Spring T20 Christchurch Black Clash brings together some of New Zealand’s biggest sporting stars in one place at one time for a fun - but competitive clash - between New Zealand’s favourite summer and winter sporting codes, cricket and rugby.
Christchurch’s Hagley Oval will witness the largest gathering of current and former New Zealand sporting heroes ever assembled for a unique sporting challenge.
Both teams – cricket, coached by Stephen Fleming, and rugby, coached by Sir Graham Henry – will have plenty to play for.
For the cricketers, their pride will well and truly be on the line. Surely they couldn’t lose to a bunch of rugby players at their own game? Team rugby will be out to make exactly that happen.
These guys (and girls) are all professional athletes, so there will be no lack of intensity.
Many of the current All Blacks team are in fact extremely talented cricketers. The nature of professionalism in the modern era meant they had to choose at quite a young age which sport to pursue.
Sadly, the days when a guy like Jeff Wilson could play both codes internationally are now long gone.
Had the likes of Kieran Read chosen cricket instead of rugby, many believe they would have gone on to wield bat and ball for their country.
The match will be a Twenty-20 cricket contest – with a few twists thrown in to make it a truly interactive experience for fans.
Scheduled for Friday afternoon/evening on January 25 at Hagley Park, the fun will start from 4.00pm. A family friendly event – The Hot Spring T20 Christchurch Black Clash is a unique chance for kids (and their parents) to get up close with the stars of cricket and rugby at the same time.
Christchurch’s Hagley Oval is one of New Zealand’s most stunning cricket grounds. The cricket-specific venue is ringed with a gently sloping embankment that allows cricket to be viewed the way it is meant to be – in the sun, on a picnic blanket, with a host of food and beverage outlets never too far away. The venue also allows for boutique corporate marquee experiences.
Coach – Sir Graham Henry
Sir Graham etched his name into New Zealand sporting history when he masterminded the hoodoo-breaking 2011 Rugby World Cup victory – New Zealand’s first triumph since 1987.
The victory, thanks to a nail-biting 8-7 final triumph over France, came despite the All Blacks suffering a relentless string of injuries to key players.
In Henry’s eight years in charge of the All Blacks, the team claimed a series victory over the British and Irish Lions in 2005, five Tri Nations titles and three Grand Slams to go with the 2011 world cup triumph.
A right-handed wicket keeper batsman in his day, Henry played first class cricket for Canterbury and Otago.
Captain – Kieran Read
Canterbury and New Zealand rugby’s gain was New Zealand Cricket’s loss. The current All Blacks captain was just 15 when he forced his way into Karaka’s Premier team – and his loss to cricket shortly thereafter was keenly felt.
“I don't think it's going too far to say he would have made the Black Caps,” the club’s captain at the time Todd McDonald told the NZ Herald. "He had something about him, even though he was so much younger than everyone else his maturity and temperament made him slot in so easily.
"It was instantly clear the ability he had, and by the time he was 16 he was the best batsman we had at the club."
Player-Coach – Stephen Fleming
Former Black Caps captain Stephen Fleming was one of the most stylish left-handed batsmen ever to grace the black cap. Also one of the game’s deepest thinkers, Fleming became New Zealand’s youngest ever captain at just 23. Now 45, he is the brains behind the success of the Chenai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League.
Captain – Brendon McCullum
The former Black Caps captain – and current T20 gun for hire for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, Brisbane Heat and Trinbago Knight Riders – holds more records for hitting a ball hard and long than you can shake a cricket bat at. Recently deposed by Martin Guptill as the highest run scorer in international T20 history, McCullum has set marks for the fastest test century (54 balls), the third highest score in all T20 cricket (158 for Kolkata in the IPL) and is the first and only New Zealander to hit a test match triple century.
Get all the details here: www.blackclash.co.nz