WHEN the International Cricket Sixes move to the Hong Kong Stadium in October, Canada will be one of three sides playing in the event for the first time. The move to the stadium has allowed organisers to increase the number of teams from nine in 1993 to 12, and also introduce night cricket by using the stadium's excellent floodlighting system. Canada join fellow associate member of the International Cricket Council, the Netherlands, and test nation Zimbabwe as first-timers in the tournament, and will line up alongside defending champions England, and runners-up Sri Lanka, Australia, New Zealand, West Indies, South Africa, India, Pakistan and Hong Kong. Canada's cricket pedigree goes back to the middle of the last century, its first international match being in 1844 against the United States. Cricket is played throughout Canada, but is most popular in Ontario, where there are more than 5,000 registered players at senior level and 200 teams actively playing the sport. Only in its third year, the tournament, which is popularly known as the Hong Kong Sixes, is following in the footsteps of the territory's most-famous sporting event - the Hong Kong Sevens. The world-renowned rugby tournament has become the standard for the abbreviated game. At this year's Sevens, Canada entered the Plate competition, where they were knocked out in the quarter-final by eventual winners South Korea, 28-5.