Five World Cup teams to be part of Rotorua whanau
Friday 18 December
Five Rugby World Cup teams to be part of 70,0000 strong Rotorua whanau
ROTORUA 18.12.09: Rotorua Mayor Kevin Winters said today that the Namibian, Samoan, Irish and Fijian Rugby World Cup (RWC) national teams, and a yet to be announced European qualifier, can be assured of the warmest of Rotorua welcomes when they base themselves in the city for the 2011 Rugby World Cup tournament.
He said he was delighted with the announcement today by RWC organisers that Rotorua would be the home base for five teams for varying durations while they are in New Zealand.
“We’ll be rolling out the red carpet for our visitors and we’ll leave them in no doubt that they have a home away from home right here in Rotorua.
“We want them to feel that they are a special part of the Rotorua family; part of a whanau of nearly 70,000 people.”
Mayor Winters said he was particularly pleased that on top of staging three RWC matches at the International Stadium, the city would also have the chance to have so many teams living in the community for between two days and a week.
“I’m sure Rotorua people will add Namibia, Samoa, Ireland and Fiji to the teams we get right behind and support, in addition to the All Blacks of course. I know our visitors will be bowled over by our city’s famous spirit of manaakitanga. Being excellent hosts to important guests is something we’ve done well in this part of the country for hundreds of years.”
Events and Venues Rotorua general manager Peter McLeod said his team would soon start working on the process of making arrangements for the teams’ stays in Rotorua.
“Shortly we’ll be sitting down to sort out what the various teams’ specific needs are and to determine how those needs can best be met.
“We’ll also be developing a hosting programme to ensure that their stays within our community are experiences they’ll never forget. This will mean calling on the Rotorua community to get behind us and our visitors, and to play an important role in making them feel right at home.”