Auckland to play major role in national tournament
4 September 2008
Rugby World Cup 2011: Auckland to play pivotal role in national tournament
Auckland will be where the action is at the business end of Rugby World Cup 2011 after today securing the bronze final at Eden Park.
RWC 2011 tournament organisers Rugby New Zealand 2011 Ltd (RNZ 2011) today announced Auckland as the host for the bronze final (third and fourth play-off) in addition to the semi-finals and the final already confirmed for Eden Park The quarter-finals will be played in Christchurch and Wellington.
Regional spokesperson for Auckland’s RWC planning Michael Barnett said securing the bronze final gave Auckland another opportunity to showcase the city to the world.
“We will have two blockbuster weekends of rugby where the eyes of the world will be on Auckland. We need to give our visitors something to remember.
“It’s our intention to programme cultural and community events between these two finals weekends to truly deliver a ‘festival of rugby’ to both visitors and Aucklanders.”
Barnett said the region was focusedon playing our part in making this the best RWC ever.
“Auckland’s success is New Zealand’s success and our strengths have Auckland ideally placed to help deliver on the national vision of a ‘unique and stunning festival with enduring impacts for New Zealand’,” says Barnett.
He wished to congratulate the other successful host cities.
“Following the tournament’s ‘stadium of four million’ theme, we’re looking forward to working closely with the other host cities to ensure a consistent Rugby World Cup experience for visiting fans and media.”
“We also want to make this an event that Aucklanders can be proud of, be involved in and benefit from.”
Today’s announcement, which confirmed Eden Park as the semi-finals venue after originally being subject to contract negotiations, also provides the region with certainty in its planning for the world’s third largest sporting event.
Auckland’s proposal to host two quarter-finals and the bronze final was a collaborative effort by organisations across the region including all Auckland councils, Tourism Auckland, AucklandPlus, the Auckland Regional Transport Authority, major stadia and the three Auckland-based rugby unions. A Regional Steering Group is leading Auckland’s preparations for the tournament and the Regional Sustainable Development Forum (RSDF) is the political body overseeing the work.
“The Auckland region is working together to ensure Rugby World Cup 2011 is a success for Auckland, for our businesses, our residents, our visitors and for our reputation,” says Barnett – Auckland Chamber of Commerce chief executive, RSDF member and Chair of AucklandPlus.
“This tournament has the potential to generate $315 million* of additional expenditure in the Auckland region, and the long-term benefits of successfully showcasing Auckland to the world will be much, much greater,” says Barnett.