The excitement, color and entertainment of the KFC T20 Big Bash League will return for a third season in December with all regular season matches to be played across the summer school holidays.
The format of the league has remained the same as its opening two seasons, with 32 round matches played over 38 days before the BIG SEMI FINALS on 7 and 8 February. The BBL|03 BIG FINAL will be held on Saturday 15 February.
Network Ten will broadcast every match live with Adam Gilchrist and Ricky Ponting taking their places behind the microphone in a highly-regarded commentary team.
Memberships for all teams go on sale from today, with great value packages to suit the needs of all BBL fans. The league has launched a national membership promotion for BBL|03 to encourage members to refer their friends to join their team. Visit www.bigbash.com.au/membership for full details.
Cricket Australia’s Executive General Manager Operations Mike McKenna said the key feature of the BBL|03 fixture is a move to ensure all regular season matches are played during the school holidays to allow more kids and families to attend summer’s best value entertainment.
“The later start to the season means that families will have a greater opportunity to come to the BBL as part of their school holiday summer entertainment.”
“This season’s fixture also has a number of new elements, including a match on New Year’s Eve at Adelaide Oval and a New Year’s Day double header in Hobart and Sydney.
“The BBL’s move to Network Ten is a sign the league has arrived as the best sporting league in summer. It has earned its place as an attractive product on free-to-air TV and we’re looking forward to showcasing T20 to an even bigger audience this season.
“Cricket Australia’s strategy for the BBL is working. The league has been successful in attracting a new, diverse fan base in its first two years with its mix of big hits, great value and explosive action. More than 13 percent of people who attended the BBL last season were experiencing live cricket for the first time. Families also made up more than 50 percent of our crowds which is exactly the target audience that we want to attract to T20.
“If you look at the average crowds and TV audiences over the past two years, the league compares more than favourably with other sports and has claims to being the most popular summer sports league in the country.
“We had capacity crowds in Hobart, Adelaide and Perth, and a record domestic T20 crowd at the MCG last season and we’re expecting a similar response this season.
“Memberships go on sale for all teams this week. They offer the best value and are the only way for fans to guarantee access to their team’s home matches or the best seats for those games.”
The explosive action will start on Friday 20 December with the derby between the Melbourne Stars and the Melbourne Renegades at the MCG. The corresponding match last year drew a record 46,581 fans as the Renegades completed a season sweep over the Stars.
The following night, attention turns to Sydney as the Sixers and Thunder look to get their seasons off to a winning start at the SCG.
An afternoon fixture between the Hobart Hurricanes and Adelaide Strikers, followed by the BBL|02 BIG FINAL re-match between the Brisbane Heat and the Perth Scorchers on Sunday 22 December will close a bumper opening weekend.
Player Signing Announcements
The initial player signing window closed last Friday (July 19) with teams required to have signed a minimum of 10 players. BBL teams will start announcing their signings and BBL|03 membership packages from today (Monday 22 July). Teams will again be filled with Australia’s best T20 players and international stars.
Keep up to day with the latest player signings here: www.bigbash.com.au