A number of people were evicted from the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 opening match at North Hagley Park in Christchurch yesterday for courtsiding.

Courtsiding refers to the practice of spectators within venues relaying information of incidents during games to people overseas, taking advantage of broadcasting time delays to manipulate betting.

It is different from match-fixing, which is the manipulation of sporting events to achieve a pre-determined outcome.

While courtsiding is not illegal in New Zealand, it is a breach of the terms and conditions of ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 tickets.


ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 policing operation commander Sandy Manderson said police knew how to identify people who were courtsiding and those attempting it would be caught.

"We know what to look for. We're aware that people are attempting to operate at venues and they will be detected, evicted and trespassed from all venues.

"We will continue to ensure that ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 is a success and an enjoyable and memorable experience for everyone involved."

Ms Manderson said police were pleased with the behaviour of the vast majority of spectators at yesterday's game, who had ensured the tournament got off to a successful start.

Canterbury police Inspector Bryan Buck said there was a great family atmosphere at the venue yesterday with a crowd of 17,500 people.

"Disappointingly the only arrests that were made today followed two pitch invasions towards the end of the match.

"Pitch invasions are offensive to communities in New Zealand and overseas and will not be tolerated by Police under any circumstances."

The two pitch invaders, a 26-year-old man and a 23-year-old man, are due to appear in Christchurch District Court on Tuesday charged under the Major Events Management Act for pitch invasion.


If convicted, the penalty includes of a fine of up to $5000 or imprisonment of up to three months.

Several other people were evicted from the venue, Mr Buck said.

"A total of 14 people were evicted and trespassed for the day due to intoxication and inappropriate behaviour which is low in comparison to the crowd size.

"We would challenge the crowd for next week's game to take that number of alcohol related incidents down to zero by drinking responsibly and eating food and drinking water throughout the day."