There will be no summer of international cricket for Hawke's Bay with the only scheduled match moving elsewhere.

Napier City Council and New Zealand Cricket made the call to shift the ODI between the Black Caps and England, scheduled for McLean Park on February 28, to the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui.

This was the third match to be moved from McLean Park because of drainage issues in the outfield.

Napier City Council chief executive Wayne Jack said it wasn't a decision they took lightly, but there were several barriers to having the turf laid in time, each out of council's control.


Due to the unprecedented rainfall since May the turf farm in South Auckland was too wet to progress the laying, sanding and seeding of the turf, and the forecast wasn't stable enough during the next two weeks to get the turf in on time for the required four-month cycle.

"The project team has been working extremely hard to deliver a revitalised McLean Park to the people of Napier and to the New Zealand sporting community by February, so this delay is hugely disappointing," Mr Jack said.

Echoing his disappointment was Central Districts Cricket Association chief executive Pete De Wet.

Mr De Wet said they were looking forward to the game but had been working closely with council and New Zealand Cricket and have one opportunity to get it right.

"In the short term it will be tough but the long-term gain will be far better."

Fan and player Andrew Frame was one Napier resident disheartened by the announcement.

He said to lose the only game scheduled was bad for fans, Central Districts and the local businesses.

"There have been so many excuses and they're now blaming it on Auckland. The problem arose before the world cup back in 2014 and they were supposed to fix it after the world cup but didn't and now it's come back to haunt us."

Mr Frame said Napier was recognised as one of the best grounds in New Zealand and going to a game at McLean Park was a traditional summer activity. He was a regular and was going to miss visiting this "sacred bit of turf".

"It's a real shame. This should've been sorted out a long time ago and we wouldn't be having this conversation, instead we would be gearing up for a summer of cricket in our lovely stadium."

Marcus Bell said as an ex Central Districts cricketer he felt deprived not being able to see the elite play at his home ground.

"I feel the young guns are disadvantaged by not seeing the elite play. Watching it on the television isn't the same as going to the game and they won't understand that."

Mr Jack said sourcing the 7600 tonnes of sand required for the subsoil drainage layers had also been problematic with getting the pitch ready in time.

"It's a very specific sand that is required, and none of the quarries we have contacted are able to supply it in the quantity we need for the park until next year."

With the construction industry in full swing there had been little interest from the sector in tendering for the work required in laying the turf in time for the February match and Mr Jack said they needed specialised contractors on the job, and a competitive and robust tender process to secure a reasonable price.

"So far, we've been unable to attract interest in this work - however we predict we'll have a better chance at this after construction's busy summer period."

New Zealand Cricket chief operating officer Anthony Crummy supported the council's efforts and said they were still fully committed to bringing back international cricket to McLean Park.

All tickets for the Napier ODI are fully refundable via Ticketek.