New Zealand international records sell-out for first time in 30 years

New Zealand

New Zealand have sold out their international double-header at Mount Smart Stadium this weekend.

More than 26,000 tickets have been sold for the back-to-back Tests. The Kiwi Ferns and the Men’s Kiwis both face Tonga.

It will be the first time the Kiwis will play in front of a capacity crowd since the 1988 Rugby League World Cup final. That clash was at Auckland’s Eden Park. 

That match was a 47,363 sell-out, the biggest crowd in New Zealand Rugby League history.

A near capacity crowd of 24,041 attended the 2017 Rugby League World Cup pool match between New Zealand and Tonga at Hamilton’s FMG Stadium.

This weekend will mark New Zealand’s return to action after more than two years. It will be the first rugby league fixture at Mount Smart Stadium since New Zealand Warriors’ last home game on August 30, 2019. The last Test played at the ground was five weeks before that against Tonga.

Fourteen years have passed since the Kiwi Ferns faced Tonga women.

New Zealand break attendance records

“The fact this is the first time we’ve sold out a stadium in close to 34 years underlines just how significant this occasion is. Even more so because it’s not a World Cup or Four Nations final,” said New Zealand Rugby League CEO Greg Peters.

“It’s a further sign of how much it means to the public to have international rugby league back in New Zealand after such a long break due to the Covid pandemic.”

New Zealand: Manu, Mulitalo, Niekore, Hiku, Rapana, Brown, Hughes, J.Bromwich, Smith, Fisher-Harris, Papali’i, K.Bromwich, Tapine. Bench: Foran, Leota, Asofa-Solomona, Nikora.

Tonga: Koula, Tuipulotu, Penisini, Suli, Katoe, Staggs, Amone, Fonua-Blake, Havili, Taukeiaho, Tupouniua, Koloamatangi, Taumalolo. Bench: Luke, Olakau’atu, Tatola, Fotuaika.

READ MORE: New Zealand and Tonga rivalry has potential to be like State of Origin believes coach

PLAY: Our free Fantasy Rugby League competition is back for 2022

About Josh McAllister 1716 Articles
Journalist. Joined the Love Rugby League team full time at the start of 2022 having been a freelance reporter for several years. Previously media manager for Swinton and Rochdale.

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