1 Mar 2021

Changes to cricket and netball venues because of increase in Covid levels

11:56 am on 1 March 2021

All of the international cricket and netball scheduled for this week will now be played in Wellington and Christchurch respectively.

Mitchell Santner and Tim Seifert celebrate.


The remaining Black Caps games against Australia and the White Ferns games against England will all be played at Sky Stadium.

The first T20 double header is scheduled for Wednesday and following Auckland's move to Covid alert level 3 yesterday the double header at Eden Park was moved south.

New Zealand Cricket has now decided to move Sunday's matches in Mt Maunganui to Wellington as well.

NZC says the latest change has been forced because of logistical ccomplications arising from the transfer of Friday's game.

All three games will be played behind closed doors.

Meanwhile the Auckland players aren't involved in Black Caps training in Wellington today as they await the results of yesterday's Covid tests.

Netball New Zealand has also decided to play all four of the Constellation Cup series games against Australia in Christchurch.

The four Test series starts on Tuesday night in Christchurch, followed by another game on Wednesday at the same venue, while the two games scheduled for Tauranga on Saturday and Sunday will also be played in Christchurch.

Gabi Simpson in action, 2017 Constellation Cup, Silver Ferns v Australian Diamonds.

Gabi Simpson in action, 2017 Constellation Cup, Silver Ferns v Australian Diamonds. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

All the games will be played without crowds.

NZN CEO Jennie Wyllie said the decision to play all Tests in Christchurch was around safety by minimising the need for teams to travel.

"We understand the disappointment that comes with making these decisions but we also feel fortunate that international netball can still be played and know the athletes from both teams will want to perform for the netball community."

The start of the America's Cup match was also delayed by at least four days due to Auckland's level three lockdown.

Organisers have announced the four scheduled races between Team New Zealand and Luna Rossa on Saturday and Sunday next week would not go ahead.

Racing would not take place before at least March 10th.

Organisers said their preference was for racing to be held at alert level one, but they would apply for an exemption to race under level three restrictions to keep their options open.

America's Cup teams Luna Rossa and Team New Zealand.

Photo: Emirates Team New Zealand

America's Cup Event Ltd chair Tina Symmans said they would continue to work closely with the relevant authorities over the next few days as the latest Covid situation unfolded.

"We need to understand all likely scenarios so that an updated racing schedule can be put in place whilst also ensuring the regulatory requirements are met."

The America's Cup Village activations were also closed due to level three restrictions.

Meanwhile other professional sport teams around New Zealand were having to make changes as Covid-19 alert levels moved.

The Blues Super Rugby side decided not to leave Wellington following their win over the Hurricanes on Saturday night.

Coach Leon MacDonald said in consultation with New Zealand Rugby the team needed to find a solution that would keep them in the competition and the players were on board with any necessary move.

The Blues are awaiting the results of Covid tests, with a plan that they will relocate to Cambridge when possible.

The National Athletics Championships, New Zealand Ironman and Auckland Open squash tournament this weekend have all been postponed.