Brenden Nel - SuperSport
Pretoria - The Brumbies may be bleating on about the challenge of beating the Bulls in front of a full house at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday, but initial indications are that the stadium may not even be full.
Kick-off is at 17:05.
According to the supersport.com website
, by Wednesday afternoon Bulls officials said that around 30 000 of the over 50 000 tickets were sold for the Super Rugby semi-final, and barring a late rush the game may not be sold out at all.
The Bulls will be looking to the Crusaders to upset defending champions, the Chiefs in the early semi-final on Saturday morning (09:35 SA time) to ensure the final can be held at Loftus but will face a tough task against a Brumbies side that will also then be playing for a final in Canberra if they upset the odds at Loftus.
While big games in Pretoria sell out relatively quickly, there has been a slowing of ticket sales, with the Bulls reducing prices earlier this year for the June international double header where the Springboks faced Samoa.
One theory is that there are Bulls fans that are “saving” their money to buy tickets for the final, while another is that the new ticket structure - where many of the season ticket holders have to pay for their match tickets as the semi or final aren't t included in some categories of season tickets - is also a factor that is being pointed to.
Either way, the Bulls have always banked on the Loftus faithful to help them in big games, and Australian teams often talk about how hostile the ground is when it is full.
Bulls officials are hoping that there is a late rush, and will continue selling tickets up until the game, or the house full signs go up, but while some blame prices for the apathy, the Test match showed that while certain prices were reduced, it was those reduced-price tickets that weren’t snapped up by the public, with many of the cheaper tickets going unsold on the day.
Match tickets can still be purchased online at Ticketpros and range between R150 and R300, with the more expensive seats on the main grand stand.
In terms of entertainment on the day, Arno Jordaan will perform on the main field while Joe F and Henk Grimsell will perform in the Beer Garden.
Park and ride busses are available from Cresta Shopping Centre, Clearwater Mall, East Rand Mall, Cedar Square, Centurion Mall, Kolonnade and Menlyn Shopping Centre, while the Gautrain will also run during the game.