Cricket Hong Kong
|Founded||1968 as HKCA|
|Affiliation||International Cricket Council|
|Location||Hong Kong Island|
|Sponsor||Regal Hotels, DTC Mobile, KPMG, Woodworm, Peroni|
|Replaced||Hong Kong Cricket Association|
Cricket Hong Kong (Chinese: 香港板球) is the official governing body of the sport of cricket in Hong Kong. Its current headquarters is in So Kon Po, Causeway Bay. Established as the Hong Kong Cricket Association in 1968, CHK is Hong Kong's representative at the International Cricket Council and is an associate member having been admitted as a member of that body since 1969. It is also a member of the Asian Cricket Council.
On 23 April 2015, Australian Tim Cutler was appointed as Hong Kong Cricket's first chief executive, tasked with making Hong Kong a shining light among the associates and building bridges with the government as well as the International Cricket Council.
History of Cricket in Hong Kong
Hong Kong became a colony of the British Empire after the First Opium War (1839–42), and it was around this time that the first recorded cricket match was played in the colony; in 1841. Ten years later, the Hong Kong Cricket Club was formed, while in 1866, Interport matches were established against Shanghai. In 1890, a further series of matches were started, against The Straights, and Ceylon. Two years after this, the Hong Kong cricket team was returning from one such match against Shanghai, when the ship they were travelling on, the SS Bokhara, was caught in a typhoon, and sank. All but two members of the cricket team, along with 114 others, drowned.
An organised domestic cricket league was first established in the 1903–04 season, and was won during its inaugural year by the Army Ordnance Corps. In 1966, the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) visited Hong Kong for the first time, on their return from a tour of Australia and New Zealand. The Hong Kong Cricket Association was granted associate membership of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 1969, and a few years later, the domestic structure was altered, with the First and Second Division being replaced with Sunday and Saturday Leagues, respectively.
In 1982, the Hong Kong national cricket team made they first appearance in the ICC Trophy, and finished fifth in their group of eight, recording two wins, against Israel, and Gibraltar. Interport matches continued until 1987, until the final one was played, against Singapore. In 1992, the first Hong Kong Cricket Sixes tournament was contested, and was won by Pakistan.
By finishing as runners-up in the 2000 ACC Trophy, Hong Kong qualified for the 2004 Asia Cup. At the 2004 competition, Hong Kong played their first One Day International (ODI) matches, suffering losses to Bangladesh and Pakistan. After finishing as runners-up in the 2006 ACC Trophy, Hong Kong once again qualified for the Asia Cup, where in the 2008 tournament, losing to Pakistan and India.
Hong Kong’s finest moment to date on the international stage came in 2014, with a win over ICC World T20 hosts Bangladesh in Chittagong. Since then Hong Kong have gone on to qualify for the ICC Intercontinental Cup and ICC World Cricket League Championships and have ODI status until at least the 2019 ICC World Cup.
During that period Hong Kong have notched their first One Day International and first-class victories and have reached as high as 10th in the world in T20 Internationals.
Cricket is now one of the fastest growing sports in Hong Kong. The game is spreading beyond the Sub Continent or English origin population and many Chinese are also taking up the sport. In a few years it is expected to make some good strides.
Flagship Events by Cricket Hong Kong
The Hong Kong Cricket Sixes
The Hong Kong Sixes is set to make a return in 2017, following a five-year absence from the international calendar. The iconic Hong Kong tournament played at Kowloon Cricket Club was first played in 1992, with the most recent edition taking place in 2012.
Hong Kong T20 Blitz
The Hong Kong T20 Blitz brings the world’s best short form players together with the premier local domestic cricket talent. There is also a focus on developing Associate Cricket, with each team required to select at least one overseas player from a non-full member nation. A total of five overseas players per team will be permitted in the 2017 tournament, up from 3 in a playing XI in 2016.
The 2016 event was highlighted by the signing of World Cup winning Captain Michael Clarke, who also spent time with Hong Kong’s national squad during his stay. His team the Kowloon Cantons were named joint winners with the Woodworm Island Warriors after rain washed out the final. Hung Hom JD Jaguars and Lantau GII Galaxy Riders were the other teams to compete in the inaugural tournament.
The full scale of success in the second edition of the DTC Hong Kong T20 Blitz has been revealed, following the release of figures from the live streaming coverage of the event.Full data collected from the tournament generated 11.8 million views across Facebook and YouTube over the five days, obliterating last year’s 51,000 over two days and the anticipated target of 1 million.Over 8.4 million of those views were live during the coverage, with the remaining 3.4 million watched the videos on demand.While, the majority of viewership came from cricket stronghold markets such as India, the growth in the local Hong Kong market was also notable.A total of 146,000 views in total were from the Territory, up from just 8,000 in the Blitz’s opening season.In addition, both weekend days of the tournament were sold out, which resulted in an electric atmosphere both at the ground and during the broadcast.
The tournament also made waves in the cricket world, with the Blitz becoming the first major T20 event to be run by an Associate member.Preparations have already begun for the 2018 event with dates to be confirmed following the release of the schedule of the Cricket World Cup qualifiers.
- Alvin Sallay (28 April 2015). "Australian Tim Cutler appointed first-ever Hong Kong Cricket Association CEO". South China Morning Post.