In the Media

BEHIND THE SCENES AT THE BAY OVAL

Cricket fans in their thousands flock to the Bay Oval each summer to watch many of the best cricket players in the world showcase their skills to an appreciative audience.

The international games always appear to go like clockwork, with a huge number of personnel involved ensuring that that the Bay Oval patrons receive their money’s worth, from the action in the middle.

Over the next couple of weeks, we chat to “OUR” people from the Bay of Plenty Cricket community, who greatly assist to make the Bay Oval Internationals a roaring success each summer.

In this edition we chat to Bay Oval Turf Manager Jared Carter, about the huge amount of work that the Bay Oval Turf team put into an International game day.

Start time on game day is generally between 7 & 8am. Even with the later start time for a day- nighter, the covers must be removed early in the morning. Days are long with near mid-night finishes and closer to 1am if logos need to be washed off the outfield.

“We have four work at the Oval during the summer (David Johnston known to all as DJ, Kyle Dovey, Craig Baldry and myself) plus two further personnel leading up to and on game day and two volunteers on match day”

Arrival on match day sees a quick catch-up to see what the weather is doing and confirm what time the rest of the team are arriving. The plan for the day is generally dictated by the weather.

Individual responsibilities see Michael Gough mowing the outfield, while DJ controls all the off-field activities and set-up. Kyle, Craig, Graham Mabey and Jared will uncover the nets and set up the practice nets. Craig and Graham then move on to helping DJ set up around the park with Kyle and Jared setting up on the field. Any sniff of rain sees all hands converge on the covers.

When asked about handing the rain Jared said “I get grumpy – so once the toss has been made we are completely in the hands of the umpires. If they want the covers put on, we get them on as quickly and securely as possible”.

“When they game is being played we are generally on rain watch. There will be various jobs that need attention around the ground as we are not on-field specific”. “We have a great team on staff with a can-do attitude, so if anyone needs help then they are happy to help, as long as there is no RAIN around”.

Change of innings is a particular busy time with the priority of sweeping around the crease lines and remarking the pitch. “The batting captain has the choice of a heavy or light roller for up to seven minutes, so we carry out the rolling to instructions”. “A throw-down net needs to go up for the batting team and taken down just prior to the teams taking to the field again”.

The end of one game kicks off the preparation for the next. “If it’s a double header then we water the pitch if it needs it. If we don’t have a game straight away then we will probably fertilize and water the block”. “Then a general tidy up and wash off the logos, if we have another match with another sponsor, within a ten day period”

We put the put the sixty-four thousand dollar question to Jared of what type of wicket does he endeavour to present for international games. “An even paced pitch with good pace and bounce. As we are one of the bigger grounds in the country, then we need pitches with good pace to allow plenty of runs to be scored. Good pace and bounce also keeps the bowlers in the game”.
 

 

 

 

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