Cricket Australia is gearing up to release their women’s and men’s Big Bash fixtures separately this week, with WBBL|04 commencing early December and BBL|08 starting around mid-December.
All that’s known for sure is that the female Hurricanes will share their seven WBBL home games between Hobart, Launceston and now Burnie, following a major State and Federal Government joint announcement to upgrade West Park Oval’s scoreboard, lighting and change rooms.
And like the WBBL competition, the male Hurricanes will now enjoy a full home and away season for the first time playing each opposition club twice.
That means seven home games in Tasmania and seven away games on the mainland, up from BBL|07’s five home and five away matches where only three opposition clubs were played twice during the round robin.
“The fixtures are just about locked in with a Monday morning release for the WBBL and Wednesday morning for the BBL, but there are often changes at the eleventh hour,” said Cricket Tasmania CEO Nick Cummins.
“As we go into a full home and away season of 14 men’s games, we have to think about the impacts that could have on the market.
“Are we going to be able to sell out seven games? Is five games in Hobart too many? Is two games in Launceston too many?
“We will find out by the way the members and fans respond this summer."
Launceston will host two men’s BBL home games after UTAS Stadium held its maiden when the Hurricanes and Sydney Thunder clashed before a bumper crowd of 16,734 fans.
The WBBL Hurricanes are also expected to play two home games at UTAS Stadium and two at Burnie’s West Park Oval as weekend double headers.
“For the men, it’s great to be up from four home games two years ago and five last year – but now we’ve got to look at the optimum mix of those games,” Cummins said.
“The people of the North and North-West do really get behind the Hurricanes and have shown there is a great level of interest in the Big Bash.
“We are the ‘Hobart’ Hurricanes – the same as all the other clubs are named after their capital cities – and we’ll continue to play the bulk of our home fixture at Blundstone Arena.
“However, we openly regard ourselves as ‘Tasmania’s Team’ - a team for all Tasmanians.
“It’s about striking the balance of having elite cricket accessible to all our fans, to inspire the next generation of young cricketers, because they got to see their heroes playing live at their local stadium."
Stay tuned to the Hurricanes’ website and social media channels for full coverage of Monday morning’s WBBL|04 fixture release and Wednesday morning’s BBL|08 fixture release.