A new indoor cricket training facility is being proposed for Whanganui and, if successful, project organisers are hopeful they'll have it up and running as early as December.
The proposal, an indoor facility inside the Jubilee Stadium extension, includes a turf, nets and framing as well as a $10,000 professional bowling machine and world-class video equipment, capable of replaying bowling and batting action instantly.
Former New Zealand cricket international and current Whanganui Cricket board member Andrew Penn said an indoor facility is much needed for Whanganui.
"At the moment there's just nowhere to go," Penn said.
"At this time of year when you want to start getting yourself organised in a club or a school first XI, you're reliant on the outdoor conditions.
"This is designed with the better young cricketers in mind, where they can work on their technique, make little changes, get video analysis and do all that sort of high performance stuff. There's nowhere to do that in Whanganui."
The board, which estimates the cost of the facility at $110,000, hopes to get most of the funding via donations, as well as grants from trusts.
"Our approach has been to start at the grassroots and go to the community and see what we can get. We have a couple of potential big donors in mind.
"We think our proposal will meet a lot of criteria. We think it'd be a fantastic asset to the community, certainly for local schools and cricket clubs."
Penn said the facility could be used not only as a training area, but also as an indoor cricket venue when the nets are pulled back. The current proposal suggests a user-pays regime where local cricketers could book a slot at the facility online.
While the proposal is in its early stages, there have been some informal discussions with the Whanganui District Council. Penn said he is confident that the council will support the idea, particularly with other surrounding districts having facilities similar to what's being proposed.
"Levin has an extremely good indoor facility. Palmerston North too - not only do they have these indoor facilities but they have the ability to grow grass and replicate a grass wicket indoors throughout the winter.
"That's the type of technology that's out there in other regions, and the fact we can't even go anywhere indoors during the winter I think marks us out as unusual."
Whanganui has a relatively large cricketing community with more than 500 active cricketers in the district, and another 2500 connected to the game.
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