Sevens may come to CT

2010-12-07 22:29

Marco Botha

Cape Town - Sponsors, development and loyalty are all factors that will play a role when the South African Rugby Union (Saru) decides which city will host the local leg of the International Rugby Board's (IRB) World Sevens Series from next year.

George's contract to host the tournament expires this year, and although this Southern Cape town and its authorities are optimistic about hosting it for another five years, chances are slim that this will happen.

Saru's Steven Roos told Sport24 on Tuesday that the tender process was ongoing, but that it would be unfair at this point to discuss this sensitive matter in public. Applications apparently close on Friday.

It has been learned that Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Rustenburg are the main contenders – especially when spectator numbers are taken into consideration.

Andy Marinos, Saru's manager of teams, this week said about the tender process: "The championship in George has a special place on our rugby calendar and the town over the years has delivered a wonderful service.

"Eventually we want to have a tournament with the same stature as the one in Hong Kong.

"And if people are willing to travel as far south as Wellington in New Zealand to watch Sevens, we can manage that here without a doubt."

The Hong Kong Sevens are still the highlight of the IRB's world series and the stadium has room for 40 000 spectators - something which it manages easily each year.

The Westpac Stadium in Wellington has room for 34 500 people and its party atmosphere has made the New Zealand championship very popular with both players and spectators very quickly.

Outeniqua Park in George only has room for 8 000 spectators. And even if additions were made to the stadium, it would probably not be enough to beat the stadiums that were built or renovated for the World Cup Soccer championship.

For Emirates, the sponsor, it will also be of more commercial value to have the matches in a city where to and from which it has flights – in which case Cape Town is the favourite.

Fouad Caunhye, the Emirates' area manager in Southern Africa, emphasised the convenience of such a decision at a media function this week.

There were more rumours in Dubai last week that the Cape Town stadium was also a favourite with the IRB.

This comes after development and upliftment of rugby in the Eastern Cape meant that the Mandela Stadium was favoured for some time.

For HSBC, the new sponsor of the whole IRB series, the hosting of a series of festive championships is also desirable. The final decision rests with Saru.


  • hilton - 2010-12-08 06:58

    Cape Town certainly makes sense. Cheaper flights from Joburg and more to see and do.

  • Will99 - 2010-12-08 07:17

    Go Cape Town! Rustenburg would also work. Here are a lot of people hungry for 7s.

  • Neo - 2010-12-08 08:09

    If you want festive, Cape Town is a no brainer!

      Howzitekse - 2010-12-09 14:43

      If it was promoted, festive and held in the Cape Town Stadium. I would get out of this easy chair, book into a B+B, go there and have a blast. So would thousands from all over SA (and other parts of the world)

  • Black Falcon - 2010-12-08 08:26

    "The final decision rests with Saru". Well I guess the Sevens is moving to the Eastern Cape (if you know what I'm saying). What a pity. Cape Town makes the most sense i.e. best tourist destination and well supported where it comes to rugby. But unfortunately politics will have the final say. I hope I'm wrong, but mark my words.

      crazydude - 2010-12-08 08:51

      The other problem is that SARU opened the bidding to rugby unions, not to stadiums. Thus the WPRU would need to work with Cape Town Stadium to host the SA 7s. The IRB wouldn't give it to Newlands, but the WPRU are the ones bidding, not CTS.

  • bud louw - 2010-12-08 08:30

    Why take the one big sporting event away from George?

      Craig - 2010-12-08 14:43

      Because economically it makes sense to host it in CT during Dec with tourism. Getting to CT is also easier and cheaper with way more to do than George. Unfortunately everything now days is about money and CT has a greater capacity with way more people over the tournament period.

  • Traci - 2010-12-08 09:24

    Don't under estimate Eastern Cape/ Nelson Mandela Bay. We blew the world away during FIFA 2010 World Cup. Cape Town might be the mother city, but Nelson Mandela Bay is where you find all her beautiful daughters....TM

      smithruan835 - 2010-12-09 13:09

      I agree!!!!!

  • smithruan835 - 2010-12-09 13:08

    Come on EP!!!!! Must be PE for sure!!!!

      Shino - 2010-12-10 09:28

      No, please... Anywhere, but PE... The stadium is built in the old industrial area of the city... I mean, what f@cking retard decided to build it there to begin with??!! Watch a game of sevens... go out for a cup of coffee at your local grocery wholesaler or traffic department... Sounds like a blast!!

      MAGIC - 2010-12-10 11:47

      Shino...within 5 minutes from the stadium you have 2 shopping malls (pier 14 and greenacres / the bridge), just down the road in Mount RD is a very decent pub and about 3 others in walking distance from stadium, some decent restaurants / eateries (black angus and cubata) within walking distance from the stadium, stadium not even 10 minutes from bluewaterbay, kings beach, pollock beach, etc. maybe 15 from the boardwalk complex. easy access to highway...

      m.borchards - 2010-12-11 15:09

      @shino. i fully agree with you! awful location! went there for SWC

  • MAGIC - 2010-12-10 09:28

    Bring it to PE! Cape Town overrated

      m.borchards - 2010-12-11 15:06

      are you crazy Magic, during the SWC I went to PE and CPT stadium. by far Cpt stadium is better in all aspects. you cannot compare the 2 stadiums, Cpt stadium is in a class of its own in terms of looks and location. Cpt overrated??? when last have you been down here?

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