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Cricketing great pads-up for Auckland Diwali Festival

Cricketing great pads-up for Auckland Diwali Festival

One of New Zealand’s finest test cricketers will come out of retirement to be part of this year’s Auckland Diwali Festival, taking place on 11 and 12 October at Aotea Square and Queen Street.

Sir Richard Hadlee will be available to meet fans on day one of the festival at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 activity zone on Queen Street.

Chief Executive of Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), Brett O’Riley, says Auckland is one of seven New Zealand cities that will co-host the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 with Australia.

“As we know Indian cricket fans are incredibly passionate, and it’s an honour to be hosting such a legend of the game at one of Auckland’s most celebrated festivals,” says Mr O’Riley.

“This is a great opportunity to get a taste of World Cup action before it arrives in Auckland in 2015, which will be one of Auckland’s busiest-ever events seasons.”

Festival-goers will also have the chance to be part of an iconic Indian cricketing moment at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 photo booth.

Using green screen technology, fans will be transported into the post-match celebrations of the Indian cricket team following their victory in the 2011 World Cup final.

Head of New Zealand for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, Therese Walsh, says one of the aims of next year’s tournament is to embrace as many communities as possible and showcase New Zealand’s cultural diversity.

“The Diwali Festival symbolises everything that we want the host city events to be – vibrant, colourful and a draw-card for families,” says Ms Walsh.

Hadlee, this country's leading test wicket-taker, is the New Zealand ambassador for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015.

He captured his 374th test wicket on 12 November 1988 against India in Bangalore. He went on to become one of the greatest all-rounders in the history of the game, capturing 431 test wickets and scoring over 3000 test runs.

The Auckland Diwali Festival is a two day celebration that brings Aucklanders and visitors of all ages and ethnic backgrounds together to celebrate and experience Indian culture in its many exciting forms.

The event is presented by Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) and Asia NZ Foundation.


(Ends)

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