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BlackBenchers To Play Ex-BlackCaps In Hamilton

The New Zealand Parliamentary Cricket Team (aka The BlackBenchers) have a busy few days ahead as they take on ex-BlackCaps, local media, and Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield in a series of matches around New Zealand.

On Sunday March 28 the team will take on a Media XI at Petone Recreation Ground in Lower Hutt, before playing a day/night game under lights at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Monday 1 March. The Seddon Park game will feature ex-BlackCaps Daniel Vettori, Matthew Hart and James Marshall. On Wednesday 3 March Parliament plays a Ministry of Health XI, featuring Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield.

“Parliament has had a cricket team since 1884 and this is our busiest summer in some years. We are particularly excited about the chance of take on ex-BlackCaps legend Dan Vettori in Hamilton. Bowling to him (or facing his bowling) would undoubtedly be the highlight of my deeply below average cricket career”, says co-captain Chris Bishop.

“Playing at an international cricket ground, under lights, will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I can’t wait”, says co-captain Kieran McAnulty.

“A big thanks to the Seddon Cricket Club for the opportunity. Seddon is a new club formed to support the Northern Districts Cricket community through the organising of events and matches for all past, present and future players and they have made quite an impression already with their burgundy and pink blazers” say Bishop and McAnulty.

“The club is named after former Prime Minister Richard Seddon so it’s highly appropriate the club play Parliament and we hope to make it an annual fixture.”

The match against Seddon will be a 30 over affair and Bishop and McAnulty say the goal is to “avoid embarrassment”.

“There’ll be a few nerves playing cricketers of such quality, but we aim to do Parliament proud.”

“On other hand, we’re determined to beat the Media XI, who have beaten us in the last two years.”

The Media XI is captained by Radio NZ journalist Ben Strang and comprises players from the Parliamentary Press Gallery and media outlets in Wellington.

Assuming the legs don’t give out, Parliament will play a Ministry of Health team on Wednesday March 3, captained by Director-General Dr Ashley Bloomfield.

“We’re not sure if Dr Bloomfield is quite as accomplished cricketer as he is rugby player, but we will soon find out!”

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