International rugby stars will be on show in Soweto for as little as R40 when SA ‘A’ take on a French Barbarians team captained by former Les Bleus star Fred Michalak next month.
In a ground-breaking collaboration with the Gauteng Provincial Government, top flight rugby will return to the Orlando Stadium for a double-header night of action, which will also see the rising stars of the Xerox Golden Lions take on the Vodacom Blue Bulls in a SuperSport Rugby Challenge match.
The match is a partnership between SA Rugby and Gauteng Provincial Government, who also plan to expose Soweto youngsters to the event by transporting them to the game.
“As the Gauteng Provincial Government, it is our firm belief that meaningful change can only happen when we embrace community based, citizen driven and civil society initiatives which contribute to social cohesion, economic inclusion, non-racialism, non-sexism, peace and harmony among the diverse and cosmopolitan people of Gauteng and this prestigious International Rugby Game strategically provides such a platform,” said MEC for Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation, Ms Faith Mazibuko.
“We have also come to fully appreciate the power of sport in driving economic growth and development by supporting local tourism and boosting our industrialization efforts”
Tickets have been aggressively priced to make what promises to be exciting international rugby as accessible as possible. Prices start at R40 with R60 and R80 options also available. They will be available through Computicket and at their outlets at Shoprite and Checkers shortly.
The matches will be part of an intense rugby week in Johannesburg with the third Test between the Springboks and France taking place at Emirates Arline Park less than 24 hours later.
“We are very excited to be partnering with the Gauteng Provincial Government in this major initiative to take top flight professional rugby back into Soweto,” said Mr Mark Alexander, President of SA Rugby.
“We saw what an impact it had on all our communities the last time we brought major professional rugby to Soweto and this is not a one-off event – we are already in conversation to repeat this idea next year.
“The SA ‘A’ team will put on an incredible display of attacking rugby, I am sure, and will be inspired by playing by in a non-traditional rugby venue. It is a thrill for rugby to be returning to Soweto for such a major match and I like to thank provincial government for the imagination they have shown in our conversations.
“We hope the people of Orlando and greater Soweto turn out in their numbers to share what will be a memorable experience. They will have the chance to see the Springbok stars of tomorrow in action as well as some legendary names from French rugby.”
The first meeting in the two-match series takes place at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban a week earlier on 16 June, on the eve of the second Test.
The main match at Orlando Stadium, which will start at 20h00, will be preceded by a curtain-raiser at 17h00 when the Vodacom Blue Bulls take on the Xerox Golden Lions in the SuperSport Rugby Challenge Gauteng-derby.