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Test Tickets on Sale...
with only 2005 until the North East's First Test Match

Tickets for the North East's first ever Test Match go on general sale on Monday, marking another historic day for Durham County Cricket Club.

The Riverside, Chester-le-Street, became the first ground in over 100 years to be awarded Test Match status when the ECB made their decision last November. As the newest first class County and now the newest Test ground on the cricket circuit, the Club has come a long way to putting itself and the region firmly on the world sports map.

The North East's inaugural npower Test Match will be five days of real cricketing class when the Club hosts England v Zimbabwe on Thursday 5th to Monday 9th June 2003.

Durham County Cricket Club Chairman, Bill Midgley, said: "Test Match cricket in the North East of England is good for sport and for the prestige of the region. 2003 is only a start and we hope to see cricket played at the highest levels at the Riverside in succeeding years. This depends upon the support of the North East who have turned out in large numbers in the past and I trust will show up again with similar levels of support and encouragement of English cricket."

Mick Waterson, Chief Executive of Chester-le-Street District Council, said: "Playing host to an international test match is a feather in the cap of, not only Chester-le-Street, but the entire region. Apart from the entertainment, this event will stimulate the local economy to benefit the local community. It does bode well for the future of cricket in the region, especially if viewed alongside plans to develop indoor cricket facilities at the Riverside."

Tickets are on general sale now priced at £25 for adults for the first four days. Under 16's can purchase tickets for the first three days for £10 and £5 for the Sunday. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Club on 0191 387 5151 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm).

International information:
1. The last ground to be awarded a Test Match was Bramall Lane, Sheffield in 1902.
2. Internationals played at the Riverside, Chester-le-Street:
20 May 1999, Pakistan v Scotland (World Cup Group Match)
27 May 1999, Australia v Bangladesh (World Cup Group Match)
15 July 2000, England v West Indies (NatWest Series One-Day International) 15,000 Sell Out
16 July 2000, West Indies v Zimbabwe (NatWest Series One-Day International)
16 June 2001, Australia v Pakistan (NatWest Series One-Day International) 12,000 Sell Out
4 July 2002, England v India (NatWest Series One-Day International) Capacity -17,200

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