A $6.6 million funding pledge to redevelop the Warrnambool and District Hockey Association's facilities has been announced by state Liberal leader Matthew Guy.
The election promise would deliver a second international-standard hockey pitch, two new dedicated Hockey5 pitches and a new two-storey, multi-user pavilion.
The funding pledge from an elected Liberal/National government would allow Warrnambool to host training and warm up matches prior to the 2026 Commonwealth Games and provide a piece of legacy sporting infrastructure that would have flow-on economic benefits for the region.
The new format of Hockey5s pitches is gaining popularity around the world, and Warrnambool would be home to the first dedicated one in Australia.
Opposition sport spokeswoman Cindy McLeish said the commitment would position Warrnambool as a key city to host big events in the future.
"The redevelopment will allow Warrnambool to host women's World Cup practice matches, should Australia's bid to host the 2026 tournament be successful," Ms McLeish said.
"This will bring hockey players, coaches and supporters from across Victoria, Australia and beyond in what will be a huge economic boon for the region."
Member for South-West Coast Roma Britnell said the association had a clear vision not only to grow the sport locally and regionally, but to provide a platform for Warrnambool and the South West Coast to be a destination location for national and international training and matches.
"This commitment sets South West Coast up to be an option for the international training camps for the Commonwealth Games," she said.
"Additionally, it will be able to host National Hockey League HockeyOne matches, Victorian Premier League matches and other state development camps and tournaments, many of which are held in our tourism low season.
"This will also provide benefits to our region particularly for the hospitality, accommodation and tourism sectors that have been smashed due to the Andrews Labor Government's lockdowns and restrictions."
Mr Guy said Warrnambool was becoming a hub for hockey in Victoria.
"'We're going to make this a facility that is fantastic quality so we can actually have Commonwealth Games sports down here," he said.
Hockey president Paul Dillon said the organisation wanted to bring elite international sport to the region.
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