CA Want Black Caps Back For Boxing Day
Cricket Australia won't make New Zealand wait 32 years for their next Boxing Day Test, with CEO Kevin Roberts also adamant the iconic fixture will long remain at the MCG.
More than 16,000 New Zealanders travelled across the ditch for the teams' first Boxing Day Test since 1987, as part of an opening-day crowd of 80,473.
The attendance was the seventh highest in Australia's Test history, while there was also a rise in television ratings to more than one million.
And Roberts said moves were already in place to make sure the Black Caps would feature on the biggest stage more frequently.
"We are already having some high-level discussions around the cricket calendar from 2023 to 2031," Roberts said.
"And we absolutely hope and look forward to hosting New Zealand at a Boxing Day Test well before another 32 years pass."
Thursday's success could not have come at a better time for the MCG.
CA are negotiating with the Victorian government for their venue-hire agreement, with the current one expiring at the end of this summer.
Recent criticism over the pitch has even prompted Perth's Optus Stadium to push for hosting the prized Boxing Day fixture in WA.
There are also external forces at play.
While New Zealand Cricket boss David White has indicated his country's desire to return on future Boxing Days, http://www.pdxst.com/home.php?mod=space&uid=696803&do=profile&from=space the reception from other countries has not always been so warm.
South Africa have not played on Australia's biggest cricketing day since 2008-09 given their desire to host their own Boxing Day Test, while the majority of Test-playing nations do not have the Christmas period in their summer.
"The MCG Test is one of the two most iconic Tests on the planet, along with the Lord's Test," Roberts said.
"You would have to say given this is the equivalent of two AFL grand finals ... that indicates the importance of it, not just in Victoria but in communities beyond Australia.
"Given the importance of the MCG Test to world cricket, I would like to think it will remain here in perpetuity.
There is a bit of work to be done on that front.
"But you would have to say it is best for world cricket to have a Boxing Day Test in Melbourne for years to come."
Meanwhile Roberts indicated he would discuss a proposed ODI Super Series with India when Australia tours the subcontinent for a three-match one-day series next month.
The idea of an annual series between Australia, India, England and a fourth nation has been floated by new Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly.
India's proposal would however put a squeeze on the International Cricket Council's desire for more global tournaments, which distribute funds to nations struggling financially.