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Adelaide may bid for Sevens World Cup

05/04/2009 07:31:27 PM Comments (0)

Australian rugby boss John O'Neill says Adelaide may bid for the 2013 Rugby Sevens World Cup.

The city is currently hosting the latest stop on the International Rugby Board (IRB) world tour, and O'Neill said the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) had held talks with the South Australian government about the 2013 event.

Despite a slight downturn in crowd numbers for the 2009 edition of the IRB tournament, which was expanded from two to three days but ran headlong into a clash with the Adelaide versus St Kilda AFL match on Friday night, O'Neill said there would likely be greater expansion of Adelaide's role once the re-build member's stands at Adelaide Oval is completed.

"There's no firm commitment from anyone but it's been the subject of a bit of discussion over a few oysters today," O'Neill said of 2013.

"The possibility of Adelaide hosting the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens tournament is worthwhile thinking about."

Faced with the choice of the sevens or the AFL, most SA sports lovers elected to head down to AAMI Stadium to watch the Crows rather than making the shorter walk from the CBD to Adelaide Oval, which attracted only about 5,000 people to what had been billed as a big opening night with the Australian side facing England.

"I'd love to avoid AFL clashes, not saying it is deliberate on their behalf, but last year it was the Crows versus Port and Friday night it was the Crows," O'Neill said.

"Friday night was a little bit disappointing, we would have expected more people out of the CBD. The crowd was around 5,000 and we would've hoped to have made that more like 10,000.

"Hopefully we can sort those issues out early so we don't have those sorts of clashes.

"Next year it's on the Easter weekend, so we need to improve some of our planning processes as well, speak to the AFL, do it all above board and hope we can come to a happy medium."

This year's tournament was played with close to half of the oval unavailable for use due to preparations for the members stand re-build, but still attracted a total crowd of around 30,000.

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