20 Jan 2010

World Cup ticket prospects boost rugby membership

3:07 pm on 20 January 2010

Rugby fans are buying up season passes, after several years of falling membership, because of the prospect of first dibs on tickets for next year's Rugby World Cup.

Season pass holders will join a pool of up to 180,000 players, referees and administrators who will get the chance to buy tickets ahead of the public.

Waikato, Wellington and Canterbury rugby unions say the scheme is leading to an increase in season membership numbers, which had been falling over several years.

Tournament organisers have yet to finalise how many tickets will be available to this group, but Waikato Rugby Union marketing manager Pat Mellsop says sales of season passes are still more than 5% up on last year's fgures. He is expecting a 20% to 30% increase by the time membership closes on 8 February.