Birmingham welcomes the world for ICC Champions Trophy

Birmingham will be in the international sporting spotlight with more than 120,000 cricket fans set to descend on the city’s Edgbaston Stadium – and live coverage beamed to a potential global reach of 2.1 billion people – as it plays host to five high-profile matches of the ICC Champions Trophy.

Edgbaston Stadium’s five fixtures – Australia v New Zealand (2 June); India v Pakistan (4 June); Pakistan v South Africa (7 June); England v Australia (10 June); and the second semi-final (15 June) – are set to deliver an economic impact of £25.3 million to the region [Regional Observatory data]. The games will be broadcast to more than 200 territories across five continents.

The tournament will provide an opportunity for Birmingham to showcase its appetite and proven track record in hosting major sporting events, as it bids to stage the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Earlier this spring, Birmingham officially notified the UK Government of its intention to bid, following endorsement from the Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bid Company after a detailed feasibility study produced by a consortium led by Origin Sport Group.

Visit Birmingham, the city’s leisure tourism programme, and Birmingham City Council have joined forces to promote the West Midlands to sporting visitors and a global television audience, as part of Birmingham’s growth strategy to attract more international tourists. According to International Passenger Survey (IPS) data released last month, Birmingham attracted more than one million visitors (1.12m) for the second successive year in 2016, a 58% increase on 2012’s figures.

Emma Gray, Director of Marketing and Communications at Visit Birmingham, said:

“The ICC Champions Trophy provides Birmingham and the surrounding region with a fantastic opportunity to inspire a huge worldwide audience to come and visit the area for both leisure and business. As part of our international growth strategy, which is already reaping results, we will be using the tournament to give potential new tourists in key visitor markets such as India and Australia a snapshot of the region’s vibrancy across our cultural, heritage and retail offer.

“Birmingham’s reputation as an international sporting destination continues to grow. In recent years, the city has proven to be a successful host for The Ashes, the Rugby World Cup, Davis Cup tennis and Diamond League athletics. We will be showing the world that Birmingham will be the perfect location for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, and encourage fans and visitors to support the city’s bid to stage this prestigious event in five years’ time.”

Visit Birmingham and Birmingham City Council logos, plus ‘Support the Birmingham 2022 Bid’ messaging, will appear at Edgbaston Stadium during games; adverts about Birmingham will feature in matchday programmes; and banners and flags will greet players and fans in locations across the city. Birmingham will also play host to the first ICC Champions Trophy 2017 Official Fan Park (Victoria Square, 2-4 June; Edgbaston Street, 4 June), encouraging cricket lovers and new supporters to watch games on two giant screens and to enjoy other cricket-related activities.

Jacqui Kennedy, Corporate Director for Place at Birmingham City Council, added:

“The ICC Champions Trophy is an amazing stage for Birmingham to show itself off to the sports-loving world. We’ve got some great fixtures coming to Edgbaston, which is a spectacular venue for cricket. The demographics of the city mean the games coming up simply aren’t just being staged in Birmingham – they mean something to many thousands of Brummies. It’s also a real boost to be the location of the first ever ICC Fan Park, as this helps people get involved with the event, even if they were not lucky enough to get tickets for the matches.”

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