Athlone Stadium is one of three match venues in the Western Cape for the upcoming World Rugby U20 Championship.
While the majority of matches will be hosted at Paarl Gymnasium and the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch, tournament organisers announced on Wednesday that the semi-finals and final of the competition will be hosted at the 34,000-seat Athlone Stadium in Cape Town.
The 2023 World Rugby U20 Championship runs from 24 June to 14 July, the first edition of the global age-grade competition since 2019. Rugby’s next generation of stars will be in action across the Western Cape in an event that deploys innovative technologies to enhance the game.
Tickets – priced from only R35 for children (under 12) and R55 (adults) per day, which includes three matches – will go on sale through Ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.co.za) from Wednesday, 31 May.
SA Rugby CEO Rian Oberholzer said: “We are working closely with all relevant stakeholders to make this a truly unforgettable tournament for the players and the spectators, and we are looking forward to hosting the best U20 players in the world next month, and to welcome their families, friends and fans to South Africa.
“It is my firm belief that the World Rugby U20 Championship will assist us in promoting and growing the game, while unearthing the next generation of Springboks.”
World Rugby are also trialing two new technologies to support officiating throughout the U20 Championship.
The TMO Bunker, which has been trialled during Super Rugby Pacific, will be further explored in South Africa to assist officiating, enhance game flow and advance player welfare.
World Rugby has also collaborated with Sportable and Gilbert to undertake the world’s first trial of smart ball technology in a live match officiating capacity at the U20 Championship. The technology, which uses artificial intelligence, will help match officials to make accurate decisions more quickly, tackling a number of common, but challenging aspects of the law.
The opening match-day of the World Rugby U20 Championship falls on the 28th anniversary of South Africa’s first Rugby World Cup triumph in 1995.
Junior Springbok head coach Bafana Nhleko said: “This tournament showcases the best U20 talent the world has to offer, and supporters will be able to watch the unique event at three wonderful venues, where they will get close to the action and enjoy every match.
“It’s been more than 10 years since we last played at home and it’s great that the prices are very affordable. We would like to see as many fans as possible at all the games.
“For the Junior Boks to be able to play on our home turf, in front of family, friends and fans, is very special, but supporters will also be able to enjoy the excitement of young guys from all over the world having a full go.”
1️⃣ Month to go!
The best young players in the world are coming to South Africa for the U20 World Championship and you could be apart of all the action ??
— Junior Springboks (@JuniorBoks) May 24, 2023
Photo: Darren Stewart/Gallo Images