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WRU statement: Full crowds permitted for home Six Nations matches

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by PA)

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The WRU have welcomed the Welsh Government decision to ease restrictions on crowds, meaning Wales’ upcoming three home Guinness Six Nations matches at the Principality Stadium can go ahead with full capacity crowds in attendance. With the country enduring a winter where crowds at live sports events had been restricted to just 50 people, there was speculation that the WRU would seek out a stadium in England to host its games versus Scotland, France and Italy.

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Matches in England would have allowed Wales to sell tickets to full capacity crowds, but this draconian need to move their home fixtures to another country has now been alleviated by the latest update to Welsh Government regulations surrounding the pandemic.

Crowds of up to 500 can now attend matches from this Saturday and from next weekend there will be no restrictions on crowds as Wales returns to alert level 0. This not only allows the cash-strapped regional teams to claw back some much-needed revenue, but it will also allow the WRU to press ahead with plans to cater for packed out Six Nations crowds, starting with the visit of the Scots to Cardiff on February 12.

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WRU CEO Steve Phillips said: “We are delighted that full crowds can return for the Six Nations in Wales. The difference a crowd makes to performance on the field is immeasurable and a number of our senior players have been very vocal about the positive impact a capacity crowd in Cardiff can make. 

“The atmosphere supporters bring to Principality Stadium is unrivalled and this news will be greatly welcomed by coaches and players. Having watched the 2021 Six Nations tournament without crowds, the recent update from Welsh Government is hugely encouraging.

“We all want to see capacity crowds at all three games but, because of the pandemic, we are now in a race against time to achieve what would usually come naturally – this is especially the case for the match against Scotland given its proximity. It’s no secret that supporters have been waiting to see what would happen with restrictions, but this hugely positive news should kickstart a fresh surge for tickets.

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“We are in a unique position whereby three weeks out from the Scotland game there are tickets still available from both member clubs and the WRU directly and this is a great opportunity for supporters, who may not normally get the opportunity to see a Six Nations match, to snap them up.

“We are very aware of what a game at the stadium means to many other businesses in Cardiff and the wider economic impact and I am sure they will join us in welcoming this announcement. 

“We just need to get on with it now and cement all our plans for the upcoming matches. It is with great pleasure that I am able to say we look forward to welcoming supporters back to Principality Stadium for the 2022 Six Nations. There is no sweeter sound than that of a full Welsh crowd in full song at the Principality Stadium.”

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