Rugby New Zealand is reporting a late surge of ticket sales for the Rugby World Cup (RWC) 2011, which will be hosted by New Zealand later this year.
More than a million tickets have now been sold, with final numbers expected to reach 1.35 million. This would equate to about A$213 million worth of tickets, or nearly 10 times the country’s highest-grossing event to date, the British & Irish Lions Tour in 2005.
RWC 2011 will span just over six weeks, starting on September 8. Matches will be held up and down the length of New Zealand, from Whangarei at the top of the North Island to Invercargill at the bottom of the South Island, with the final to be held in Auckland on October 23.
The organisers of the event were initially hopeful Christchurch would still be able to host its seven scheduled matches in the wake of the February earthquake but these have since been re-allocated to other cities. Stadium Christchurch was deemed to need “extensive repairs” to both its structures and playing surface and it could not be guaranteed the repairs would be completed in time.
This article is an excerpt from Jane E. Fraser’s weekly travel column in The Sun Herald, Sydney.