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Volume 6 No. 235


Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium will "host an August soccer match" between EPL clubs Man City and Liverpool, one of the first "benefits of the city’s agreement to help renovate the football stadium," according to Harrison & Lyttle of the CHARLOTTE OBSERVER. Man City will play Liverpool in Charlotte as part of the eight-team Int’l Champions Cup that will be played July 26-Aug. 4 around the U.S. Tournament organizers will be "able to use the stadium rent-free, saving the organizers $250,000 and making Charlotte a more attractive place to bring the game." When the City Council voted last year to give the NFL Carolina Panthers $87.5M for stadium renovations, the team "agreed to provide four rent-free dates a year for 10 years." Last year’s inaugural Champions Cup drew an average of 42,000 fans at stadiums across the U.S. According to reports, this year’s games will be played July 26 in Phoenix, Denver and Chicago; July 27 in Pittsburgh; July 29 in D.C. and Dallas; July 30 in Philadelphia and N.Y.; Aug. 1 in N.Y.; Aug. 2 in Hartford, Ann Arbor and Charlotte; and the semifinals and final Aug. 3 and 4 in Miami. Bank of America Stadium has "hosted high-level soccer before," including two games in the '11 Gold Cup between national teams from North America, Central America and the Caribbean (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/4).

Hong Kong's "top world-ranked team sport, cricket," hopes to benefit from a HK$1B ($130M) fund set up by the government, "in order to build a new home in Ma On Shan," according to Alvin Sallay of the SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST. The Hong Kong Cricket Association will "apply for money from the fund," which was announced by Hong Kong CEO Leung Chun-ying in his policy address and is "intended for the development of recreational or community facilities on restored landfill sites." HKCA President Rodney Miles said that cricket deserved a "large new facility, especially given the outstanding performance of the national men's team" at the Int'l Cricket Council World Cup qualifiers in New Zealand and the ICC World Twenty20 qualifiers in Abu Dhabi. Deputy Secretary for Home Affairs Jonathan McKinley said that the new fund would "try to cater mainly for sports which had few existing facilities, such as cricket and baseball." McKinley: "Each individual project which is approved will get maximum funding of up to HK$100 million ($13M). We are looking actively at providing cricket and baseball grounds" (SCMP, 2/4).

Four-time Melbourne Cup winner Lloyd Williams will "relocate his multimillion-dollar thoroughbred empire to the Mornington Peninsula and put his racehorse factory at Mount Macedon, Macedon Lodge, up for sale," according to Bartley & Johanson of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. However, it seems that the A$20M ($17.9M) price tag placed on the "state-of-the-art racing operation will more than likely only appeal to wealthy Middle Eastern or Asian racing enthusiasts rather than Australians due to the price." The proposed site for Williams' new racing base on the Mornington Peninsula "promises to be just as remarkable in design as his establishment at Mount Macedon." Williams' son, Nick, said that the "nerve center" of the new racing complex will be a "121-hectare property the family owns in Boneo Road, Cape Schanck." Nick Williams said, "Macedon Lodge is a $20 million-plus investment and this will be similar if not more." Apart from a "series of tracks that reach beyond eight kilometres, Macedon Lodge has a range of other state-of-the-art facilities including a 75-metre pool, water-walker and a special lighting set-up for recuperating horses." It is believed to be able to "house more than 100 horses" (SMH, 2/5).