Heineken Cup final 'sells out'
Tickets for the Heineken Cup final later this month will not be going on general sale after Leinster and Ulster fans pounced on their respective allocations today.
Some 7,500 tickets were assigned to each province for the final, which takes place at Twickenham in London on May 19th, with season ticket holders given first preference. The European Rugby Cup said the game would be an 82,000 sell-out.
Leinster operated a lottery format for season ticket holders (two tickets initially per successful request) while Ulster have an ordered meritocracy procedure that starts with current season ticket holders who may purchase four tickets, numbers permitting.
A Leinster spokesman said demand for tickets had comfortably outstripped supply today.
An Ulster spokesman said demand had been strong but that a small number of remaining tickets would tomorrow be offered to supporters who were purchasing season tickets for the 2012/13 campaign. These were expected to be taken up quickly tomorrow morning.
A spokesperson for the European Rugby Cup confirmed that significant numbers of Ulster and Leinster supporters had purchased presciently in the hope that their teams would make the final.
He also pointed to a growing trend over the past five years in which rugby supporters from all over Europe purchase tickets and then elect to attend the final, sporting their club colours, even if their team doesn’t make it. So expect to see some Leicester Tigers, Northampton Saints, Toulouse, Munster and Clermont Auvergne jerseys at Twickenham.
The public sale for the European final (55,000) and the teams’ allocation (15,000) leaves 12,000 tickets and these are allocated by ERC to tournament’s stakeholders, the six unions (Ireland, England, Scotland Wales, France and Italy), the LNR (France), Premiership Rugby (England), official hospitality packages, commercial partners and sponsors and the media, broadcast and print.