Ashes opener and a multi-million dollar upgrade to continue Australia's unbeaten Test run at The Gabba

Ashes opener and a multi-million dollar upgrade to continue Australia's unbeaten Test run at The Gabba


Cricket Australia and Queensland Cricket have confirmed that the First Test of the 2021-22 Ashes series against England will be held in Brisbane after the Palaszczuk Government announced a $35 million funding injection for the Gabba. 

The Gabba's world famous reputation as the home of the first test of the Australian cricket summer has been reaffirmed with the upgrade.

Last month it was announced that the Gabba would also play its traditional role as host of the opening test of the upcoming 2019-20 season, in the first match of the test series against Pakistan in November. 

Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni revealed today (Saturday) that the funding injection will be committed in the Palaszczuk Government's State Budget on June 11th.

"Whether fans turned up to The Gabba to cheer on the Australian test team or the Heat, or in their Lions jersey, this upgrade will enhance every second of the action," he said.

"Entry through turn-styles will be quicker and easier, and with upgraded TVs throughout the stadium you won't miss a second of the action when you visit the new bars and food outlets.

"With these upgrades, and Australia's unbeaten record here at The Gabba I'm sure the Ashes Test will be unforgettable one for fans.

"Venue hirers have also been talking to us about media and corporate spaces and as part of the upgrade these will be improved as well. 

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the upgrade would further enshrine the Gabba as a uniquely Queensland venue.

"Like all of the world's great arenas, the Gabba has its own character and famous history," Ms Palaszczuk said.

"This upgrade will enable us to enhance that even more."

Deputy Premier and Treasurer Jackie Trad said the $35 million investment would help ensure the Gabba continued to deliver world-class occasions which supported the local tourism economy.

"These improvements will add to the venue experience and enhance the Gabba's reputation as a venue that delivers outstanding matches and events," Ms Trad said today.

"This investment acknowledges the importance of attracting and retaining major events in Queensland because they deliver positive economic outcomes and attract visitors to spend locally.

"We also know, with the addition of a new Cross River Station we are delivering, that the journey will be quicker and easier with greater connectivity within the Woolloongabba precinct."

Australia's record at the Gabba currently sits at 30 Tests unbeaten since 1988, the longest active streak in world cricket.

Cricket Australia CEO Kevin Roberts confirmed the first Test of the 2021-22 Ashes series would be held at the upgraded Gabba.

"Nothing excites Australian cricket fans like an Ashes series on home soil and the upgrades to the Gabba will ensure that in hosting the first test of the Ashes series in 2021-22, fans in Queensland will get the first opportunity to enjoy world-class cricket while experiencing the upgraded facilities,'' he said. 

"We thank the Queensland Government, led by Premier Palaszczuk and Minister de Brenni, for its support and ongoing collaboration to deliver these important improvements ensuring that Cricket continues to unite and inspire Queensland communities,'' he said. 

Queensland Cricket Chief Executive Officer Max Walters welcomed today's announcement. 

"The Gabba receiving stage one upgrades is fantastic news for Queensland Cricket and all cricket fans across the State," he said. 

"Our recent discussions with the State Government on the future of the ground have been extremely positive, and we thank Minister de Brenni for sharing in our vision of ensuring the Gabba remains one of Australia's premier stadiums. 

​Media contact - Minister de Brenni's office - 0466 834 330