23 Mar 2017

NZ Rugby confirms Sevens makes first financial loss

2:34 pm on 23 March 2017

The writing appears to be on the wall for the international rugby sevens tournament in Wellington, with the event suffering a financial loss for just the second time.

A review of the January tournament is still being carried out, but in all likelihood it will be moved to another city or New Zealand may be dropped from the international sevens circuit altogether.

Sevens fans at Westpac Stadium.

Fans are deserting the Wellington Sevens tournament. Photo: PHOTO NZ

Organisers struggled to sell a third of the tickets for the tournament this year and while New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew wouldn't reveal the size of the loss, he said it had led to re-think about the tournament's future.

"The gate income from the Wellington Sevens this year has left us with a loss for the first time ever and that has caused a sobering re-think of just where we sit.

"Where (the tournament) sits right now is not where it wants to be and despite significant endeavours to re-shape, re-position, and re-price it hasn't worked from a fan interest perspective.

Should Wellington lose the tournament, Dunedin and Hamilton are seen as possible candidates to host the tournament.

Wellington has hosted the event for 18 years.