Rugby

RWC organizers hit target of 1.8 million tickets sold, warn of scams

AFP-JIJI

Rugby World Cup organizers announced Friday they had hit their target of selling 1.8 million tickets during the tournament but warned fans against touts and falling victim to scams.

Despite fears that crowds might be sparse in Japan, not a traditional rugby nation, fans have turned out in their droves, packing stadiums even for games not involving tournament heavyweights.

World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont said the tournament had “captured the hearts and minds of a nation and the global rugby family” and congratulated the Japanese organizers for hitting their milestone.

There are now a “limited” number of tickets available on the official ticketing website, as sponsors and nations hand back some seats, organizers said.

However, there have been “inevitable incidents related to ticket scams, touts selling fake tickets and third-party websites selling tickets unofficially” with some fans who bought seats illegally being denied entry to games.

Such incidents are likely to increase as the pool phase hots up and the tournament enters its knock-out stage, organizers said.

“While tickets remain available, our advice to fans is to only buy through official channels to avoid being disappointed,” said Beaumont.

Ticket prices vary widely, from ¥100,000 ($936) for the best seats at the final, to ¥2,000 for the cheapest entry to the pool game between the United States and Tonga.

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