Lions to set new Super Rugby crowd record at Ellis Park

2013-08-01 00:00

CAPE TOWN — The Lions will set a new Super Rugby attendance record on Saturday when they host the Kings at Ellis Park in the second leg of their promotion-relegation play-off matches.

According to the Rugby365 website, the 60 000-seater stadium will be packed for the first time in a Super Rugby game.

All external ticket outlets were sold out by Tuesday and when the stadium offices opened yesterday morning, there were a mere 500 tickets left.

The Sharks and Bulls currently share the all-time attendance record for a Super Rugby match, having sold out their 52 000-seater stadiums for the 2007 (King’s Park, Sharks v Bulls) and 2009 (Loftus Versfeld, Bulls v Chiefs) finals.

While some purists will claim Saturday’s match is not a Super Rugby match in the truest sense of the word, the fact that Super Rugby status is up for grabs, makes it legitimate.

The Kings boasted a crowd of a little over 26 000 for the first leg at the Nelson Mandela stadium last Friday.

The Lions were replaced by the Kings for this year’s competition, but are favourites to return next season after beating their foes from Port Elizabeth 26-19 in the first promotion-relegation match last week.

For the Kings to stay up, they have to win Saturday’s second clash at Ellis Park by at least eight points or with a four-try bonus point.

The match kicks off at 5 pm.

Meanwhile, Saturday’s Super Rugby final between the Chiefs and Brumbies was also sold out, but Waikato stadium in Hamilton can hold just 25 000 spectators.

TEAMS

Kings: 15. SP Marais, 14. Hadleigh Parkes, 13. Ronnie Cooke, 12. Waylon Murray, 11. Scott van Breda, 10. George Whitehead, 9. Shaun Venter, 8. Jacques Engelbrecht, 7. Wimpie van der Walt, 6. David Bulbring, 5. Darron Nell (captain), 4. Cornell du Preez, 3. Kevin Buys, 2. Bandise Maku, 1. Schalk Ferreira Substitutes: 16. Charl du Plessis, 17. Hannes Franklin, 18. Steven Sykes, 19. Devin Oosthuizen, 20. Nicolas Vergallo, 21. Wesley Dunlop, 22. Shane Gates

Lions: TBA

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