Gabba sells out for first time since 2006 Ashes

Friday's game is now a sell-out, with Brisbane Heat general manger Andrew McShea confirming it was the first time since the 2006 Ashes Series, when 39,315 packed the ground on day two, that the Gabba had sold out.
"We put the sold out sign up officially at around 9.30am this morning," McShea said on Thursday. Only a few corporate suites were available for Friday's game.
"But all publicly-available seating is exhausted," McShea said. I think from a Brisbane Heat point of view, it's a pretty unique position for us."
Brisbane Heat crowds have grown steadily over the past five seasons, despite inconsistent on-field performances.
I think our win-ratio at home is only around 21 per cent," McShea said.
"But what has been interesting is that our crowds have been the third largest in the country, behind only the MCG and the new Adelaide Oval.
The Heat's previous record crowd was 33,783, recorded during last year's Big Bash game against the Adelaide Strikers.
Official Gabba crowd figures maintained by Stadiums Australia show the largest crowd at The Gabba since its modern circular stadium configuration was 39,874 on January 1, 2006 when Australia played South Africa in a One-Day International.
However different seating and members seating arrangements make it difficult to compare "sell-out" crowds in one format with record crowd attendances in another.
Cricket Australia has already publicly toyed with the idea of playing a Big Bash League game on the evening of Christmas Day in 2017, raising the ire of church groups and retired players.
McShea agreed a Christmas game could be popular with fans, but said "all stakeholders" needed to be spoken with before the Gabba decided to host a Christmas Day Big Bash clash.
"I think from a fan's point of view they have seen it (sport on Christmas Day) work in other countries, in other markets and in other sports," he said.
"So again, from a fans point of view, I think it could be quite appealing sitting there with the family on Christmas night, enjoying it."
For Big Bash games, the Gabba seats about 36,000, excluding members and sponsors tickets.
A pitchside pool has also taken out 1500 seats.
Cricket at the Gabba over the next month includes:
• December 30, 2016 - Brisbane Heat v Hobart Hurricanes
• January 3, 2017 - Brisbane Heat v Sydney Sixers
• January 11, 2017 - Brisbane Heat v Perth Scorchers
• 13 Jan 2017 - ODI: Australia v Pakistan
• 20 Jan 2017 - Brisbane Heat v Melbourne Renegades
The Brisbane Heat beat defending champions, the Sydney Thunder, on Wednesday night, giving them two wins to begin their 2016-16 Big Bash season.
Brisbane have retained the same squad for the Hurricanes match, with coach Dan Vettori keen to see the Gabba pitch and conditions on match day before settling on the starting side.
"It's always an excellent cricket wicket at the Gabba so we'll have a look at the conditions and work out the starting side," Vettori said.