Matamata Swifts completed a long-term, and key, development project early in 2023, when the new floodlights at the Matamata Domain were switched on in front of a group of delighted club members.

The Swifts will, belatedly, celebrate the installation of the lights when the club hosts Cambridge in a WaiBOP League One match on Thursday July 13. “We were looking for the right type of match to mark this milestone for our club,” said Swifts Vice-President, Rob Cox, who was one of the key drivers for the project.

“What better way than a league fixture involving our men’s 1st team playing our friends from Cambridge? This will be a competitive game with league points on the line, so definitely worth a watch. With the game being on the Thursday evening preceding Matariki Weekend, we hope it will appeal to casual sports fans as well as football fans, so we’d like to invite the Matamata community along to join us.”

The Swifts will use the occasion to bring everyone who helped on the project together and offer their sincere thanks. This was a project that wouldn’t have been possible without the help of a range of organisations and people.

“We had some amazing support,” said Kyle van Waveren, who managed the lighting project for the Swifts. “From those who provided the funds we needed to purchase the lights, poles, and cabling, to the people who gave their time and expertise to help us bring the project together, the community backing was nothing short of spectacular.”

Matamata Swifts would like to thank the following people and organisations:

  • Four Winds Foundation.
  • Jimmy Neal Electrical.
  • Colchester Engineering.
  • The Clothier Family.
  • PR Accounting.
  • Comag.
  • The 2022 Swifts All Stars.
  • Scott Electrical.
  • J Swap Contractors.
  • Elektron Group, with special thanks to Ryan van Waveren and Kevin Cannell.
  • Matamata Directional Drilling. Special thanks to Jeff Stoner.
  • Slattery Contracting.
  • Daniel Kruger (building inspector).
  • Dave Taylor.
  • All the Matamata Swifts club members who got stuck in, when required, digging, running cable, and providing advice.

The moment the Domain was finally bathed in light was the culmination of years of effort and the realisation of a long-held ambition to provide footballers in Matamata with a better environment for honing their skills.

“It was a special moment for all of us,” said Comag Matamata Swifts 1st team coach, Dwayne Barlow. “Our players have struggled for a number of years with the conditions available to them, so to be able to train properly is amazing.

“It still feels a little bit special every time I hit the green On button every Tuesday and Thursday,” he joked.

After switching the lights on the club has made great use of them. The club’s senior men’s teams train on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, and the Swifts Ladies train on Wednesday evenings. Friday evenings see the club’s youngest players, the four- to seven-year-old mini-kickers, run out at their new more family friendly time. This schedule will continue through the winter. The lights will also allow the club to expand their summer 5-a-side programme, with games running later in the evening.