The ICC Women's T20 World Cup held in February-March this year has been recognised at the 2020 Australian Event Awards, including winning the top honour Australian Event of the Year, as well as the country’s Best Sporting Event.
The ground-breaking tournament attracted an overall attendance of more than 1,36,000 people to 23 matches in six host cities around the country and generated unprecedented television and digital audience numbers. It culminated in a crowd of 86,174 at the final between Australia and India at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on the International Women's Day (8 March), a record attendance for a women's sporting event in Australia and the second-highest attendance at a women’s sporting fixture anywhere in the world, ever.
The awards were announced on Wednesday (21 October) evening during a series of simultaneous functions held across Australia. The Australian Event of the Year winner is chosen from the national winners of the best event categories and recognises an event that excels against the criteria of its category and demonstrates an outstanding example of innovation and best practice in the events industry. The full list of winners and finalists can be found here.
Nick Hockley, who was the CEO of the ICC T20 World Cup Local Organising Committee, before taking on his current role as Interim Chief Executive of Cricket Australia, was at the Australian Event Awards function in Sydney to accept the awards.
A wonderful opportunity to reflect on the brilliance of March 8, 2020! 🙌 pic.twitter.com/hM0KIz64nc— Cricket Australia (@CricketAus) October 22, 2020
"We are thrilled to receive these awards as recognition for what was an incredible event, which featured amazing performances from players on the field and unprecedented support from fans who filled venues around the country and watched in huge numbers on TV," said Hockley.
"The event was only made possible through the support of governments around the country, our world-class venues, the ICC, Cricket Australia, State & Territory cricket associations, commercial partners, media and broadcasters, suppliers, volunteers, players and of course the fans.
"The ICC Women’s T20 World Cup was more than a sporting event – it was an opportunity to showcase women’s sport on the biggest stage. Hopefully, young girls and boys will be inspired to dream big and follow in the footsteps of the star players who put on such an amazing show.
"Everyone involved will be forever grateful that we were able to complete the event in a year when so many events have been cancelled or postponed. We pay tribute to the resilience of everyone in the events industry, which has been so severely impacted by the pandemic."
Recent winners of the major awards include the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix (2019) and the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games (2018).
The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup will be held in Australia in 2022 after the event, originally scheduled for October-November 2020, was postponed due to COVID-19.
Australian Event Award entries are judged by industry leaders and experts from around Australia on all aspects of event management including best practice, innovation, marketing, stakeholder engagement and management, sustainability and event legacy.