New Zealand AFL Fixture In Doubt After Less Than Half Of Spectators Paid For Tickets
Fewer than half the 13,285 people who attended this year's Anzac Day Australian Football League match at Westpac Stadium "paid for their tickets" -- a revelation that "could put the future of the annual event in jeopardy," according to Dave Burgess of the DOMINION POST. It was understood just 6,400 people "paid face value for their tickets." The Wellington City Council was understood to have put about NZ$600,000 of ratepayer money "into promoting the game" -- equating to more than NZ$90 for every ticket sold. The contribution included NZ$400,000 from its Economic Development Fund, and NZ$200,000 from another council funding stream. Council policy "was that every dollar spent on big-event promotion" should give the city a NZ$20 return. Deputy Mayor Justin Lester was "cagey" on whether next year's match -- marking the centenary of the Anzac landings at Gallipoli -- "would take place." He said "It's under review and hard questions are being asked about the return on investment to Wellington" (DOMINION POST, 6/5).