Growth and Development
The new council had its headquarters in Christchurch, where they have stayed ever since. It was not long before the council was required to control first-class cricket on a growing scale. It was barely 10 years old before the then Governor-General, Lord Plunket, awarded a shield for interprovincial competition. At first this was played on a challenge basis, but in the 1921–22 season a regular competition, with Auckland, Wellington, Canterbury, and Otago taking part, was instituted. After a few years the matches were set at a four-day limit. When a fifth team, Central Districts, was admitted to the contest in 1950–51, it played three-day games, while other matches still had a duration of four days. In the following season all five teams had four-day games, but in 1954–55 the shield matches became three-day fixtures. In the 1956–57 season a sixth team, Northern Districts, joined the competition.
Another of the council's major tasks, in a country with an increasing cricketing population, was the administration of the Hawke Cup contest. The cup was given by Lord Hawke in 1910–11 for minor associations' competition. It is a keenly contested competition still.
In the 1898–99 season New Zealand made its first overseas tour, to Australia – a tremendous task for the new and untried council. But from that point New Zealand teams have gone overseas fairly often. Finance, until very recent times, has always been a high hurdle. The council's finances have prospered in the post-war years, with some successful tours from overseas teams and, particularly, with the £15,000 profit shown by the New Zealand team in England in 1949.
For many years the council held its meetings twice a year, with delegates present from affiliated associations, major (first class) and minor. At the annual meeting a management committee of five was elected, consisting of five men, all resident in Christchurch. The first major change in the council's constitution took place in July 1956, when a special general meeting of the council was held. The new constitution adopted at that meeting provided for the control and management of cricket by a council, a board of control, and an executive committee; the direct representation of all affiliated associations at the annual and other general meetings of the council; Dominion-wide representation on the council and Board of Control; and notification to all associations of nominations for officers of the council and all elective members of the Board of Control before the annual meeting.
A survey in recent years shows that there are about 1,500 adult teams playing in the organised competitions of the affiliated associations. As well as these, there are of course large numbers of secondary school teams which, in the main, play in their own competitions.