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HONG KONG, October 6: New Zealand will be aiming to upset the odds when they make a welcome return to the fray at the 2003 Cathay Pacific/Standard Chartered Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes.

Mathew Sinclair
Mathew Sinclair
- drafted into
Kiwi team
© Cricinfo

Making their first appearance in the competition since 1996, the Kiwis, who will be led by Matt Horne, are anxious to improve on their record in the event that carries prize money of US$260,000.

Opening batsman Horne is one of three international stars in the New Zealand squad for the ninth staging of the world's premier Sixes competition – the others being aggressive all-rounder Andre Adams and diminutive wicket-keeper/batsman Chris Nevin.

They will be joined at Kowloon Cricket Club on November 1-2 by Aaron Barnes, Auckland's Batsman of the Year, Tama Canning, Auckland's Player of the Year, Wellington all-rounder Matthew Walker and Joseph Yovich, a linchpin of the Northern Districts team.

"All four (Barnes, Canning, Walker and Yovich) are prominent first-class cricketers, each of whom are still in contention for selection to the New Zealand team," said Martin Snedden, Chief Executive Officer of New Zealand Cricket Inc.

New Zealand have been drawn in Pool 1 alongside defending champions and tournament favourites Pakistan, hosts Hong Kong and India.

Having competed in the first five editions of the competition, the Kiwis have not participated since 1996.

Their only silverware from the Sixes came on their last appearance when they defeated Australia in the final of the Bowl. At Kowloon Cricket Club next month, their target will be to qualify for the Cup knockout stage.

Horne's team have been presented with the perfect opportunity to make a fast start as they will take on Hong Kong in the opening match of the 2003 tournament, at 8.30 am on Saturday, November 1.

The top two teams from Pool 1 will qualify for the Cup knockout stage where they will face the leading two from Pool 2, which is made up of England, South Africa, Sri Lanka and tournament debutants Kenya. The bottom two teams in each of the pools will compete for the Plate.

"We are delighted that New Zealand are making a return to the tournament and also that they are sending such a young and powerful group of players," said Mike Walsh, chairman of the Hong Kong Cricket Association.

Tickets for the 2003 Cathay Pacific/Standard Chartered Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes are selling fast. 'Early bird' two-day ticket prices have been set at HK$300 for adults and HK$150 for children under the age of 15. From October 18, the prices will increase to HK$380 for adults and HK$200 for children.

Games are played in five-over innings, with each team member, other than the wicket-keeper, bowling one over.

New Zealand squad: Matt Horne (captain), Andre Adams, Aaron Barnes, Tama Canning, Chris Nevin, Matthew Walker, Joseph Yovich.

The 2003 Cathay Pacific/Standard Chartered Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes will take place at Kowloon Cricket Club, 10 Cox's Road, Kowloon on November 1-2. Early bird two-day passes cost HK$300 for adults and HK$150 for children aged 15 years and younger, and are on sale through Cityline ( as well as at the following outlets:

  • Hong Kong Cricket Club (137 Wong Nai Chung Gap Road, Happy Valley, 2574 6266);
  • Kowloon Cricket Club (10 Cox's Road, Jordan, 2367 4141);
  • Dot Cod Seafood Restaurant & Oyster Bar (Prince's Building, Central 2810 6988);
  • Hong Kong Cricket Association (Room 1019 Sports House, 1 Stadium Path, So Kon Po, 2504 8102).

Provided by CCIL/Hong Kong Cricket Association. For further information, please contact Danny Lai at (852) 2504-8102.

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