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Volume 6 No. 215


A "digital revolution is under way" at the Sydney Cricket Ground, with a new A$197M ($185M) grandstand "to become more technically advanced than a sports fan’s loungeroom in time for this summer’s Ashes Test," according to John Lehmann of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. Fans "will be able to order food and drinks on their smart phones, select their own camera angles for viewing, click into key game stats and send out personal photos without the usual congestion that jams big sports events." A special app "is being developed to help fans find their way to their seats, order tickets to future games and share live event action over social media from anywhere in the ground." The "digital bells and whistles will be delivered over a WiFi and IPTV network being laid out" under a A$12M deal finalized last week with Telstra and Cisco (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 9/30).

Construction for a proposed new multi-purpose arena in Würzburg, Germany "could start as early as mid-'14," according to BR. Evaluations and a business plan for the new arena "have been created, but talks with potential investors are yet to come." Basketball Bundesliga (BBL) s.Oliver Baskets Würzburg Managing Dir Steffen Liebler said, "If everything goes smoothly then I think we will be able to play in the new arena at the end of 2015 or the beginning of 2016." Liebler said that all necessary evaluations have been obtained and "approved as positive." The arena's main investors are local developer Gerold Bader and his brother. The two purchased an approximately 21,000 square meter area at the beginning of the year. It is the proposed site for a new 6,000-seat arena. In addition to basketball games, the arena is expected to host events such as concerts and conferences. The construction costs are estimated at up to €30M ($40.6M) (BR, 9/27).

Pacific-League winning baseball team Rakuten Eagles announced its project "to increase crowd capacity at Kleenex Stadium to 28,120 seats in anticipation of the club reaching the Japan Series for the first time ever." The expansion project, which got under way in August, "has already added about 2,000 extra seats." Another 1,155 seats "are scheduled to be installed, if the Eagles reach the Japan Series" (KYODO, 10/1). ... A "burst underground pipe, and not heavy rain or an intense match schedule, was primarily at fault for the turf fiasco at the Hong Kong Stadium" that threatened the Barclays Asia Trophy and ManU's exhibition game this summer. Hong Kong FA Chair Brian Leung Hung-tak said, "The true story is that a pipe from the underground sprinkling system had burst. Unfortunately, this was right under the center circle and no one knew about it for a long time" (SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST, 10/1).