Thursday, March 12, 2009

RWC 2011 sked released

Via Rugby Planet:

2011 World Cup draw announced

Thursday 12th March 2009

Thirteen venues across New Zealand have been chosen to host pool matches for Rugby World Cup (RWC) 2011 after the Match Schedule was announced in Auckland on Thursday.

Rugby New Zealand (RNZ) 2011 CEO Martin Snedden confirmed the Tournament will kick off at Eden Park in Auckland on Friday 9 September 2011 when New Zealand will play Tonga.

Auckland (Eden Park), Wellington and Christchurch have been allocated five pool matches each while North Shore, Hamilton, New Plymouth, Rotorua and Dunedin will each host three matches. Whangarei, Nelson, Palmerston North, Napier and Invercargill will host two matches.

Read the rest, here.

I'm personally disappointed to see the South Island get the short end of the stick. I realize it is much less populated than the urban centers of the North Island, but I would much rather see a minnow pool stage test played in Queenstown than anywhere near the North Shore. I suppose Eden Park is a motorway drive too far a drive for suburbanites from Takapuna and the East Coast Bays, but speaking as an outsider, who the heck would choose the apple orchards sterile new development of Albany over the Southern Alps and Lake District? Just askin'.

Complete RWC 2011 draw (.pdf), click here.


At 5:41 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think an important part of the reasoning there that you're missing out is that the North Shore is full of South African ex-pats. Staging the low-interest Springbok games (both against yet-to-qualify teams) there makes good commercial sense. It's all about the ticket money. Queenstown would have been great though.

At 5:53 PM , Blogger Dave said...

I don't deny it makes commercial sense, but if that was the only metric then NZ wouldn't have been awarded the tournament in the first place. I don't want to belabour the point, and I don't want to rain on a parade of what is actually a pretty good schedule, I just think the South Island was hard done by. The crown jewels national treasure of NZ is the Southern Alps, and it would have been nice to schedule a match there. Whereas the North Shore, no offense to ex-pat South Africans, it doesn't offer more than just another big suburb. Not that there's anything wrong with that, I'm sure the suburbs will do a nice job.

At 9:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm rather surprised to see four games on the second day of the tournament. Would it not have been better to arrange the schedule so that there is more than one game on those days when the only match is a less-than-stellar match up?

At 3:32 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It makes commercial sense for the NZRFU - they're the one who gets the ticket money (and that's the only money they get). Same reason the Australia games are mostly in Christchurch and Scotland mostly in the South Island - trying to play the local markets to sell out otherwise low-interest games. It's stunt casting.

Queenstown would clearly be a better venue than some of the others, for all the reasons you outline (and because Rotorua International Stadium is a dump), but the money's not there. The ground's too big to sell out a minor game and too small to be worthwhile on a big one (unless the tourism board paid them off, which actually wouldn't have been such a bad idea...). 13 venues was pushing it with the IRB already.

Like always, it's just about the money.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home