Game on for the longest match
People who love to watch cricket for hours on end are in for a treat this weekend.
Mike Butler, Simon McGrath and 22 Cornwall teammates will try to break the world record for the longest continuous cricket match.
They planned to start the match at Cornwall Park from 9am today.
Drive for 55 will see them playing for 55 hours through to Sunday at 4pm.
And it’s all for a good cause, with proceeds raised going to the Starship Foundation.
Mike says the idea first popped into his head in the office one Friday afternoon thinking about his cricket match the next day.
“I googled the longest match and we talked about breaking it,” he says.
“After a while we thought it’s not such a silly idea after all.”
The group planned breaking the official Guinness world record of 36 hours, set by a group of Englishmen, by playing for 45 hours.
But three weeks ago they discovered an Australian group played for 50 hours and 15 minutes over Easter, which has not yet been officially recognised as a world record.
Determined not to be outdone by the Aussies, the Mt Eden resident says they decided to play on for a little bit longer.
“If it’s warm, sunny weather we’ll be happy, but if we have to bat in the rain, then we’ll bat in the rain.”
Full teams will face each other for the first 10 to 12 hours, then three or four players will rotate off once it gets dark.
Players can sleep while their side is batting, but will have to face away from temporary floodlights brought in for the overnight sessions.
“Our wives and partners are going to bring down food for us,” Simon says.
And choosing a charity was easy, with Simon and Mike’s children both needing care at Starship hospital soon after they were born.
“They saved my daughter’s life from birth so I thought we should give something back,” Simon says.
Starship Foundation community fundraising manager Sarah Bell says they are “delighted” to be the chosen charity.
Rocker Jordan Luck will perform at 4pm on the Sunday to celebrate completing the match.
Spectators can also enter a bowl-off competition to win tickets to Australia. Qualifying rounds for the bowl-off are on Saturday afternoon, with finals on Sunday.
To make a $3 donation, text cricket to 469.
Plenty of stamina:
Simon McGrath, Stephen Knowler, Mike Butler and Ryan Allan are going to need their coffee when they take part in a world record attempt for the longest continuous cricket match at Cornwall Park this Friday.