Newlands bosses gutted by India schedule

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The Western Province Cricket Association has reacted with disappointment to the news that there will be no matches against India at Newlands in Cape Town at the end of the year.

The Western Province Cricket Association has reacted with disappointment to the news that there will be no matches against India at Newlands in Cape Town at the end of the year.

The schedule was announced on Wednesday, with Durban and Johannesburg getting a Test and an ODI each, and Centurion handed the other one-dayer. Cricket South Africa said they were trying to give all venues a game over the summer, and that Newlands would host games against Australia.

"From being scheduled to host Sachin Tendulkar's 200th test to nothing, this is a big shock to us and it will impact seriously on our business," said WPCA President Beresford Williams.

The WPCA stands to lose several million rand in income from the changed tour plans, with advertising income, beverage sales, hospitality and vending all affected.

"Worse still, the most loyal cricket spectators in South Africa are going to be losing out", said CEO Andre Odendaal.

He added, "Newlands is the premier test ground in South Africa, traditionally bringing in the most spectators and the highest income for tests for Cricket South Africa. So we are mystified by the decision.

"There has been no explanation given to us so far, but we are encouraged by the President's statement that CSA is 'working on plans to fill the gaps in our international itinerary for this season'".

Odendaal added, "CSA is working hard to provide alternative product for local fans and one prospect that we relish is a well marketed Ram Slam T20 tournament with all the Proteas stars available in January/February'.

"The prospect of our eight national players and world stars like Dale Steyn, Hashim Amla, Vernon Philander, Jacques Kallis, Graeme Smith and JP Duminy being eligible for the Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras is a mouth-watering one. That should fill Newlands."

Another light point is the test match versus Australia which will take place at Newlands from 1 to 5 March.

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