A bold proposal to turn Mission Road into an international-class cricket venue has been met with tentative approval by the Urban Services Department (USD), according to Hong Kong Cricket Association (HKCA) officials. The HKCA has submitted plans to the USD suggesting Mission Road be turned into a 'home for cricket', comprising a new pavilion, indoor nets and an international-standard ground. HKCA officials said yesterday the SAR was missing out on international fixtures and tournaments for want of a full-sized ground. Redeveloping Mission Road could solve that perennial problem, said HKCA grounds sub-committee chairman Roger Nissim. 'Quite simply, Mission Road is the only ground in Hong Kong that is big enough to hold one-day internationals and recognised matches,' Nissim told Sports Post. 'It's very early days yet and there is a long way to go before it happens, but basically what we are saying is: Why not have a national ground for cricket? 'We are playing in international tournaments at all levels and we've got a lot of support from the International Cricket Council, which wants to see cricket take off in China . . . and we can be the gateway,' Nissim added. HKCA chairman Peter Slack said a redeveloped Mission Road could open the door to more international tournaments. 'Bangladesh was given this one-day knockout tournament . . . there's no reason why we could not hold similar events if we had a ground that was of international standard,' Slack said. Mission Road was one of several sports grounds across the SAR turned over to the Government by the British Army following the transfer of sovereignty. As yet, the Lands Department has still to decide the site's usage. If the department allocates the ground to the Provisional Urban Council, the redevelopment looks likely to go ahead if the ground is kept for recreational use. 'In principle, they accept the concept of a cricket centre for Hong Kong,' Nissim said. In outline proposals submitted to the Urban Council, the HKCA stressed it did not expect sole use of the Mission Road site. Slack said the HKCA had suggested being allocated a certain number of days per year. 'We've got to be realistic,' Slack said. 'There is a lot of demand for sports grounds in Hong Kong and we know that there are a lot of other sports that would want use of Mission Road. 'What we have suggested is that the HKCA is guaranteed, say, 30 out of 365 days every year where it can be used solely for cricket.' Nissim said the key to Mission Road being used as a multi-sports facility was how the ground was managed. 'If you look at the Kowloon Cricket Club, they play hockey and football on the outfield but when it rains nobody plays on it,' he said. 'It all comes down to management. If the ground is managed properly it can be used by lots of sports,' he added.