St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth has been hosting international cricket matches since 1889 and was, in fact, the first ground outside England or Australia to host a Test match. Today this historic venue hosts all forms of cricket and is known for its excellent atmosphere.

Did you know?

St George's Park also hosted South Africa's first rugby match, against England in 1891.

Port Elizabeth is known for its hospitality, and the local cricket fans at St George’s Park uphold this reputation. The stadium, which has a capacity of 19 000, has become famous for the local brass band that often performs during matches, creating a rare and festive atmosphere.

In addition to hosting all forms of international cricket, St George’s Park is also one of two home grounds of the Warriors franchise (the other is Buffalo Park in East London), whose squad in recent years has included international cricket stars such as Mark Boucher, Jacques Kallis, Makhaya Ntini, Lonwabo Tsotsobe and Johan Botha. Domestic matches thus have much to offer travelling cricket fans.

Records indicate that Test matches played on this ground rarely end in draws, with the pitch offering plenty for bowlers, particularly fast bowlers. South Africa cricket legend Shaun Pollock, for example, took 58 international wickets at St George’s Park during his career. Back in 1896, Englishman George Lohman took 15 wickets in one match while conceding just 45 runs.

In one-day internationals (ODI), however, scores in excess of 300 are not uncommon, with run-hungry spectators generally given a good feast. South African batting stars Herschelle Gibbs, Jonty Rhodes and Kallis all average around the 50 mark in ODIs at St George's Park.

The ground hosted several matches during the 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup, including the semi-final in which Australia beat Sri Lanka.

Women’s cricket is also often played at this ground. In 1960, the South Africa women’s team played its first international match at St George’s Park, against its English counterparts.

Port Elizabeth has a vibrant social scene, and those who want to continue festivities after stumps have been drawn have a variety of options. Locals will gladly advise the best venues according to which night of the week it is.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

Eastern province Cricket
Phone: +27 (0)41 585 1646

How to get here

St George’s Park is located within the Port Elizabeth city centre area, which is just a few kilometres away from Port Elizabeth Airport.

Best time to visit

Cricket season in South Africa is generally from October to April.

Around the area

Port Elizabeth boasts some excellent beaches where the sea is warm enough to swim without a wetsuit most days of the year.

What will it cost

Tickets for matches at St George’s Park range between R20 and R250, depending on the type of match.

What to pack

It’s often pretty windy in Port Elizabeth, so bear this in mind when choosing what hat to wear.

Where to stay

For luxury accommodation, you may wish to consider the Radisson Blu; if you’re on a budget, PE Backpackers may be what you’re looking for.

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