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SBD Global/November 13, 2013/Events and Attractions

Hong Kong Cricket Association Execs Seeking Support As Singapore Emerges As Rival

Top Hong Kong cricket officials "lamented the government's lack of 'dynamism' and support for sport," with Singapore looming as a "potential rival" to host int'l events once that city's new sports hub is up and running in April, according to Alvin Sallay of the SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST. Hong Kong Cricket Association Chair Mike Walsh said, "Singapore is really working hard to become the regional focus for so many sports, among them being a potential new headquarters for the International Cricket Council." HKCA Secretary and local ICC rep John Cribbin said, "They [the Singapore government] are much more serious about supporting sport than ours. They are more receptive to ideas [on how sport can help raise the profile of a city]." As the Hong Kong government still "mulls the best way to finance" its proposed HK$19B ($2.5B) sports complex at Kai Tak, a "leading ICC official has said Singapore is poised to become a prime centre" for int'l cricket with the new hub "capable of being calibrated to become a 35,000-seat cricket stadium that can host world-class events." Walsh said unless Hong Kong "got its act together quickly, the city was in danger of falling behind its regional rivals, not only in cricket but in other sports, too." Walsh: "It looks like it will be a great addition to Singapore and the region and all credit to them for having the foresight to go ahead with it. While we here have been 'umming and aahing' for the past several years over something similar for Kai Tak, they have gone ahead and done it" (SCMP, 11/11).
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