Sale of 'complimentary' tickets to All Blacks v Lions test under investigation

Two tickets to the All Blacks v British and Irish Lions test match in Wellington, which appear to have originally been ...
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Two tickets to the All Blacks v British and Irish Lions test match in Wellington, which appear to have originally been complimentary, have gone on sale through a Facebook group for $1000.

New Zealand Rugby is investigating after a pair of what appear to be complimentary tickets to the All Blacks test match against the British and Irish Lions in Wellington went on sale for $1000.

Faith Guild said she bought the tickets from someone she would not identify for about $1000. She was now selling them on Facebook because she could no longer go to the game, at Westpac Stadium on July 1.

She was unaware the tickets were marked "Comp" – suggesting they were originally complimentary – when she advertised them, she said.

NZ Rugby's Lions tour general manager Nigel Cass said the union would investigate whether the tickets were complimentary ...
CAMERON BURNELL/ FAIRFAX NZ

NZ Rugby's Lions tour general manager Nigel Cass said the union would investigate whether the tickets were complimentary and had "gotten into the wrong hands". "If this is the case, they will be cancelled and reissued to the person they were intended for." (File photo)

Under the Major Events Management Act (MEMA), which covers the Lions tour, the sale of a ticket "for a value greater than the original sale price" is not allowed.

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NZ Rugby's general manager of the Lions series, Nigel Cass, said it was a good reminder to fans that they should buy tickets only from official sources. 

Wellington is set to be invaded by fans of both the Lions and All Blacks at the end of June, as it was during the 2005 ...
FAIRFAX NZ

Wellington is set to be invaded by fans of both the Lions and All Blacks at the end of June, as it was during the 2005 tour. (File photo)

"We're investigating this specific issue with our ticketing provider to determine if the tickets have gotten into the wrong hands.

"If this is the case, they will be cancelled and reissued to the person they were intended for.   

"Under MEMA, reselling or trading a ticket for a value greater than its original sale price, either in person or online, is an offence punishable by a fine of up to $5000." 

The 10-match Lions tour, which stretches across seven cities over six weeks and kicks off on June 3 in Whangarei, is a marquee event that is reflected in its ticket prices, which range from $149 to $449.

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Guild's tickets are  in the "bronze" covered section behind Westpac Stadium's goalposts. Had they been on sale officially, they would have been at the lower end of the price range.

Avid rugby fan Jeremy Shannon said the seller and NZ Rugby should be "ashamed of themselves" for allowing the situation to happen.

As a Westpac Stadium season ticket holder who entered the public ballot for Lions tickets and missed out, he said it was not a good look to see tickets that appeared to have been free selling for such a high price.

About 350,000 tickets have been sold for the tour, which features matches against the Provincial Barbarians, the Maori All Blacks and the country's Super Rugby teams, as well as three tests.

 - Stuff

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