The BLACKCAPS and WHITE FERNS have surprised members of the Indian cricket community in Hamilton by turning up to their social cricket match and presenting them with a limited edition “two homes” shirt.
The new shirts have been created by major sponsor ANZ and recognise the passion the Indian cricket community has for both their home team and the BLACKCAPS and WHITE FERNS. The shirt reflects this tug of allegiances with a design half dedicated to India and half to New Zealand.
Four versions of the “two homes” shirts have been created, representing the countries of India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan. With an estimated 27% of New Zealand’s population born overseas, many fans find themselves supporting more than one team.
ANZ NZ Head of Sponsorship, Sarah Rogan, says that, with the Bangladesh and Pakistan international teams visiting this season, it was an ideal time to recognise these communities and the role they play in the sport.
“Sport is a big part of a national identity, and the shirt symbolises that for many cricket fans, they have two homes and often support two teams,” she said.
“ANZ along with New Zealand Cricket wanted to celebrate the contribution these communities make to the game.”
Vishnu Nair, secretary of local club The Little Masters, was among those presented with a shirt.
“This jersey from ANZ has given us celebrates and embodies the spirit of unity. A symbolic wear that represents friendship between the two nations we call home.”
NZC chief executive Scott Weenink congratulated ANZ on the initiative.
“It’s wonderful to see this kind of cultural engagement through cricket – it’s part of our philosophy and we whole-heartedly endorse it.
“New Zealand has a rich and diverse ethnic landscape and it’s lovely to see ANZ celebrating this.”
ANZ has been major sponsor of New Zealand Cricket for 24 years.