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HomeSportsCricket'Queensland Cricket would "go broke" in three or four years' says Usman...

‘Queensland Cricket would “go broke” in three or four years’ says Usman Khawaja

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The Queensland government’s proposal, which would have required sporting clubs to pay for the majority of the reconstruction of the vital Gabba replacement venue, has drawn harsh criticism from the governing bodies of cricket.

The building of a new 20,000-seat stadium at the RNA Showgrounds will be funded entirely by the AFL, Brisbane Lions, and Queensland Cricket. This is to ensure that the Gabba remains open during renovations leading up to the Olympics.

The state organization and Cricket Australia released a joint statement the day after Test player Usman Khawaja expressed concerns that Queensland Cricket would “go broke” as a result of the relocation’s costs, expressing disappointment over the lack of consultation regarding the plan.

This week, the Queensland government announced that it will contribute $45 million to the project. The remaining $137 million is expected to be paid for by the Lions and Queensland Cricket, two Gabba tenant organizations, the Brisbane City Council, and RNA.

Chief executive Nick Hockley of Cricket Australia and Queensland cricket boss Terry Svenson stated that the sport had not been given enough information about the Showgrounds redevelopment and wanted to pursue its own proposal to upgrade Allan Border Field for more games.

As this will have negative long-term financial and operational implications for our sport, including at the community level for players, volunteers, and fans throughout Queensland, we cannot support the expectation that the sports fund the cost of their own displacement from the Gabba, the statement read.

Moreover, it is illogical for us to pay up to $90 million for a makeshift location that will be barely utilized once the Gabba is back online.

Cricket has therefore made a case to the government to upgrade Allan Border Field (Albion), an investment that will leave a lasting legacy for the game as well as a venue to host matches in the run-up to and during the Games should cricket be included in the 2032 schedule.

“We are also disappointed that, in spite of our repeated requests for information, including pertinent timeframes, there has been no thorough consultation.”

Concerns were also raised by Hockley and Svenson about how soon the proposed stadium would need to be built—less than two years would pass before the Gabba is closed for renovations.

They stated, “We hope to put in place arrangements to ensure that the ongoing commercial viability and the positive economic and social impacts of cricket are maintained in Queensland. We will continue to engage with the government and other relevant partners in this regard.”

On Monday, Khawaja expressed his belief that the expenses would significantly impoverish the Queensland game.

“Not playing at the Gabba is going to be a big burden for Queensland Cricket, and it’s a little disappointing to hear how state government is going about it at the moment, not offering any help, which seems totally bizarre to me,” the man stated. “I’m really worried right now,” he added.

We will lose roughly $45 million over the course of four years as a result of not playing at the Gabba.

“If that’s the case, I don’t know what’s going to happen; in three or four years, cricket will go broke.”

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