Bellerive Oval, also known by its sponsored name Blundstone Arena, is primarily a cricket and Australian Rules Football ground located in Bellerive, City of Clarence, on the eastern shore of Hobart, Tasmania, Australia. It is the only venue in Tasmania which currently hosts international cricket matches, and has a capacity of approximately 16,000, although a record crowd of 16,719 watched Australia play England in 2003.
It is best known as the home ground for the state cricket team, the Tasmanian Tigers, and as a venue for international Test matches since 1989 and one-day matches since 1988. Bellerive Oval underwent a $16 million re-development at very start of the 21st century and that was completed at the end of 2002. The re-development includes: state-of-the-art indoor nets, a 6,000 seat Southern Stand that contains the new television media centre, Members Area that features press and radio media areas, as well as corporate boxes and lunchrooms, members bar, TCA offices and a players area.
Structures And Facilities:
In 1999 came the announcement that the Federal Government would give $5 million dollars to the upgrading of Bellerive. The TCA added an extra $10 million to upgrade on loan from the state government, and the Clarence City Council an extra 1 million dollars for a $16 million upgrade. The first part of this upgrade was the state-of-the-art indoor nets. The 6,000 seater Southern Stand came next, which blocked winds and views of the Derwent, and contained the new media centre. The new Members' Area was the last of the upgrades, along with new perimeter fence and entry gates. The Members' Area features press and radio media areas, corporate boxes and lunchrooms, as well as the players areas, member's bars and TCA offices.
The redevelopment was officially opened on 11 January 2003, when an overcrowd of 16,719 (official capacity 16000) witnessed a thrilling one day match between Australia and the old foes England, with Australia winning in a thriller. Tasmanian Tiger Shane Watson became the hero for Australia, bowling the very tense final over. Nowadays the spacious hill is the most popular seating areas in the ground, mainly because usually it's one of the cheapest areas. The Southern Stand is the most expensive stand to sit in. To allow for day night matches to be played at the venue, four light towers were installed in 2009 at a cost of A$4.8 million. This development enhances the venue's suitability to continue hosting international one-day and Twenty20 matches. The installation of these lights sparked significant debate from groups both for and against the new towers.
As well as being the home of domestic and international cricket and the Clarence Football Club in the now Tasmanian State League, Bellerive Oval served in 2003 as a home to the Tasmanian Devils in the VFL. The first match attracted the highest VFL roster match crowd since 1986 - 6,970. The venue also hosted Tasmania's two finals matches, with the elimination win against Geelong (4,800) and the massive 10,073 for the semi final against Port Melbourne, which the Devils lost after squandering a 23 point lead at three quarter time.
- Surface: Grass
- Capacity: 16,200