Christchurch Rugby World Cup games stay in South Island
Some of the Rugby World Cup matches scheduled for Christchurch will remain in the South Island, while the new Otago Stadium has been given the go-ahead to host Dunedin’s world cup matches.
Tournament Organiser Rugby New Zealand 2011 (RNZ 2011) today announced the revised match schedule following the decision to reallocate all matches from Christchurch because of the impact of the devastating February 22 earthquake.
Three of the five rescheduled Christchurch pool matches will remain in the South Island. Nelson, Dunedin and Invercargill will each host an additional match.
The remaining two matches have been reallocated to Wellington and North Harbour.
As announced two weeks ago, the two quarter-finals due to be played in Christchurch on October 8 and 9 will be played at Eden Park.
Rugby World Cup Limited chairman Bernard Lapasset said that all Tournament stakeholders had been supportive throughout the rescheduling process.
“Following the difficult decision to transfer the Christchurch matches all involved have worked hard to confirm the new venues as quickly as possible. We are pleased that three of the five matches will remain in the South Island.
“We appreciate the patience shown by the teams and fans during this difficult period and are enormously grateful for the support and cooperation of all our partners during what has been a complex process,” Mr Lapasset said.
RNZ 2011 chief executive Martin Snedden said: “Today’s decisions provide the certainty for the affected seven teams, their fans and media around the rescheduled matches.
This has been a complex logistical process, but with the help of our Tournament partners, the arrangements are now complete.”
RNZ 2011 also announced that the new fully enclosed Otago Stadium, now nearing completion, has met the criteria to be confirmed as a RWC 2011 match venue.
“The Otago Stadium operators have provided us with the assurances we need for us to now be confident that the new venue will be ready to deliver on its tournament obligations so we are pleased, today, to formally confirm this excellent new facility as a RWC 2011 match venue,” Mr Snedden said.
Dunedin’s iconic stadium Carisbrook, nicknamed “the house of pain”, had been on standby to host the Otago games if the new stadium wasn’t completed in time.