The Basin Reserve will host all the Firebirds' home matches this season, with Karori Park not up to first-class standard and Westpac Stadium clearly not suited to domestic cricket on evidence of last year's dire crowds.
That means four T20 Super Smash matches in November-December, with two Wednesday afternoon and two Sunday afternoon slots. There's also four 50-over matches and four Plunket Shield four-dayers, with CW agreeing to play one "home" shield match away due to not having a second viable first-class venue. With four Black Caps international matches in the city - two against Pakistan and two against Australia - CW hoped to capitalise and continue the cricket buzz from the World Cup.
There was widespread agreement that last year's big T20 weekends at one venue didn't work, and CW was focused on drawing families to their upcoming Firebirds matches.
Clinton also confirmed they would look to fill their two T20 import slots as they defend their title, albeit without the Champions League carrot.
The domestic season makes its earliest start on record on October 15, when the Firebirds play Northern Districts at Hamilton's Seddon Park. It's not an ideal opener, with Northern's bevy of Black Caps including new ball pair Tim Southee and Trent Boult likely to be playing as a tune-up for the Australian tour.
New Plymouth's Yarrow Stadium hosts the T20 finals weekend from December 11-13, due to Hamilton and Dunedin both hosting Sri Lanka tests during that period.