Vuvuzelas banned from Soccer City - by rugby bosses
The Springboks will play New Zealand at National Stadium - better known as Soccer City - on August 21, following a ground-breaking decision between the South African Rugby Union and the Golden Lions Rugby Union.
The announcement was made by the president of the Saru, Oregan Hoskins, at a media function in Johannesburg in Wednesday — and it also materialised that vuvuzelas will not be allowed at the Test where the Boks will begin the home leg of their Tri-Nations campaign.
The announcement by the GLRU president Kevin de Klerk followed investigation into the use of vuvuzelas at rugby matches.
“We have done our research and have found that vuvuzelas interfere more with rugby than with soccer.”
That confirms the views of Bulls captain Victor Matfield who captained his side twice at Orlando Stadium during the Super 14 play-offs, and of his opponent in the final Schalk Burger.
They both said communication on the field was difficult and Hoskins pointed out that referee Craig Joubert had to allow added time for the captains to communicate with their players in the final.
The decision to move to the 94 700 National Stadium which hosts the Fifa World Cup final on Sunday allows for 5 000 tickets to be sold exclusively at Computicket outlets in Soweto for just R100 from July 26th.
More than 9 000 of the available tickets will be sold at R350 - the lowest price for a major Springbok Test since 2005.
The size of the stadium creates the potential for the largest crowd for a home Springbok Test in 55 years (since an estimated 95,000 attended the SA v Lions Test at Ellis Park in 1955).
Free parking will be incorporated into the ticket price for every four tickets bought.
There was also a hint that the GLRU are considering a move to the stadium.
“It is a definite possibility and we are investigating the situation -but we negotiated with stakeholders for this test and will continue to do so to see what the possibilities are for a move for the Lions to Soccer City,” said De Klerk.
“This is an historic day and one in which the whole of South Africa can celebrate,” said Hoskins.
“Taking the Springboks to what is already an iconic world venue gives our players and supporters the best stage on which to enjoy rugby.
“But it also allows us to continue the nation building through sport that we have enjoyed throughout the Fifa World Cup.”
The Golden Lions have been informally discussing the idea of playing this fixture at National Stadium for a year, and had the prerogative to make the final decision.
“I am delighted to say that the Lions needed no encouragement from Saru to make the switch,” said Hoskins. “It has presented logistical and contractual challenges to them but I would like to commend Lions president, Kevin de Klerk, and his team for their determination to make this dream a reality.”
De Klerk said the decision had only been taken after consultations with key stakeholders such as sponsors, suite and season ticket holders and the rugby clubs of the GLRU.
“The only thing that surprised us was the near unanimity of our stakeholders in embracing this decision,” said De Klerk.
The Lions had opted for a differential ticket pricing system - in line with the Fifa model — in the hope of producing a sell-out crowd.
The price of standard tickets is R500 — a price that was locked in before the start of the season as part of the Union’s season ticket pricing.
“Sports fans have had to dig deep over the past few weeks and we know how much it has cost families to watch the World Cup.
“But a family of four can come to see the Springboks play the All Blacks in what is likely to be John Smit’s 100th test at one of the best facilities in the world for R1400 in total — and that includes parking.
“And to offer the opportunity to the local community to see the Springboks — possibly for the first time — we have 5000 tickets available at just R100, as well as normally priced tickets, available through Computicket outlets only in Soweto.” A second release of tickets may be made at a later stage, depending on the uptake of stakeholders.
Tickets for the match are available through Computicket channels (Computicket outlets, Money Market counters in Shoprite Checkers and Checkers Hyper stores; online at www.computicket.com or through the Computicket call centre on 083 915 8000 and go on sale on Monday.
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