IRFU stands firm on pricing scheme
August 20, 2010
The IRFU's pricing scheme for Ireland's November Tests at the Aviva Stadium has generated much controversy © IRFU
The Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) has defended its ticket pricing for Ireland's upcoming internationals at the Aviva Stadium.
The IRFU announced on Wednesday that punters could not buy tickets on an individual basis for their November Tests against South Africa, Samoa, New Zealand and Argentina, meaning that those wishing to attend the games at the redeveloped Lansdowne Road venue would have to fork out a grand total of €340 (£280).
The announcement of the new pricing structure was met with widespread criticism, not least because the game-by-game breakdown of match ticket prices indicated a price hike of 25 percent in comparison to last year's Tests at Croke Park. However, the IRFU is standing by its pricing.
"The IRFU is a not-for-profit organisation and is not in existence to produce a financial dividend to shareholders," a statement from the Irish game's governing body read.
"Irish rugby is the only fully professional sport in Ireland and the only dividend that the IRFU produces is one of participation in sport. As such, the Ireland squad and international games at the Aviva Stadium need to produce a financial surplus that is then fully distributed throughout all levels of the game.
"While the IRFU appreciates the current economic climate affecting the country, this surplus is needed to develop and nurture the future of the sport from the grassroots level upwards.
"The pricing of general entry tickets reflects the enhanced offering to patrons at the new Aviva Stadium with its modern design giving greater standards in terms of seating, views of the pitch as well as access to a greater number of concession stands, restaurants and bars…..
"Tickets are sold through the clubs of Ireland and the packaging of games has been in place since 2005. Clubs may distribute tickets in whatever way they feel best suits their members and this would include selling individual tickets to games out of the grouped ticket packages allotted to clubs. Following this distribution to rugby clubs and schools, any remaining tickets may be sold through the Irish Rugby Supporters Club on a similar basis."