Auckland NRL Nines – game on

Published: Wed 4 Sep 2013 10:06 AM
Media release
4 September 2013
Auckland NRL Nines – game on
Australasian sports fans will get to witness rugby league history next year, after ATEED (Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development) today confirmed a five-year sponsorship with the National Rugby League (NRL) to host an annual nine-a-side tournament involving all 16 NRL Clubs.
The inaugural NRL Auckland Nines will take place on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 February next year at Eden Park. The tournament is set to become a regular highlight of Auckland’s major event programme. The five-year sponsorship of $9 million is one of ATEED’s largest investments from the Major Events Fund since Rugby World Cup 2011.
Auckland Mayor Len Brown says: “The NRL Auckland Nines will become a hotly contested pre-season event, and a great spectacle for sport fans. This is unprecedented – never before in the game’s history have all 16 NRL clubs played in one place on one weekend.”
Rachael Carroll, ATEED General Manager Destination, says today’s much-anticipated announcement follows 18 months of feasibility and negotiations conducted by ATEED and involving the NRL, New Zealand Rugby League, ARLC (The Australian Rugby League Commission) and Duco Events  – the event organiser and underwriter.
“The NRL Auckland Nines stacks up very well against Auckland’s Major Event’s strategy criteria as an anchor event for Auckland. These are events that will generate significant international exposure, economic impact and visitor numbers over the contract term,” says Ms Carroll.
Independent economic consultants Covec estimate the tournament will result in an additional 32,800 visitor nights in 2014, rising to more than 43,000 in the tournament’s fifth year. The economic injection for Auckland’s has been estimated as $3.8 million next year, rising to $6.8 million in year five.
“Hosting the NRL Auckland Nines will greatly enhance the profile of rugby league in New Zealand, and will leave lasting legacies for Auckland. We believe David Higgins and his team at Duco Events will provide the ‘X factor’ to make this an entertaining and wonderful spectacle for all sports fans,” says Ms Carroll.
NRL Auckland Nines tickets go on sale 24 September 2013.

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