R155m signals a win for all
Apart from the gate takings, hawkers with food, drinks, flags and regalia are looking to score big time tomorrow
THE second Test between South Africa and England tomorrow at the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein is expected to contribute about R155m to the local economy, chairperson of the board of directors of the Free State Cheetahs Ryno Opperman said.
“By playing the powerful English side in Bloemfontein, the Springboks will also contribute to a huge economic injection for the local economy. History shows that a Springbok Test match can result in a total contribution of R155m to the local economy.
It is also anticipated that a Test match can result in the creation or sustaining of about 400 temporary and permanent jobs. So there is a huge benefit in hosting such an important event,” he said.
Tomorrow’s match, which will be the 40th Test between these sides, is expected to be full to the rafters following the nail-biting clash last weekend at Ellis Park Stadium where the Springboks emerged victors by 42-39.
The match is expected to provide local business people with opportunities ranging from accommodation, catering, social clubs and street vendors among others, with significant returns this weekend.
Bloemfontein Hawkers member Pule Mokoena said they were expecting to do well this weekend. “We, the hawkers, who will be selling flags, regalia as well as food and drinks around the stadium are thrilled with this opportunity.
We normally sell food at a soccer match but now the league is in recess so we will shift to rugby in order to make ends meet. Our members will be smiling all the way to the bank on Monday.”
Artist Brendon Roets says he will be applying face paint to fans especially young people who love the Springboks. “I know young people love to paint their faces, so I’m expecting to have more people using my services on Saturday, hopefully we will make more money this time around,” he said.
Mark van Wyk said his guesthouse was already fully booked after a significant number of bookings early this week. “We have people from as far as Upington who will be at the match, so it will be a good weekend for us ,”he said.
The Free State Rugby Union said it was particularly excited about the prospect of hosting such an important Test in Bloemfontein.
“It’s a special occasion for the province and people. It will be a great privilege to see the Springboks and England play in Bloemfontein,” Jerry Segwaba, the president of the province’s rugby union said.
He said they were aiming for a good crowd tomorrow, especially because it will be Youth Day. “We looked at the needs of our supporters and created more ticket categories to offer more affordable ticket prices,” he said.
The tickets price begins at R100 with the most expensive just over R1 100.
Metro mayor Olly Mlamleli said they were excited about the event. “As the metro we are going to roll out the carpet to our guests who will be coming in droves. We want them to feel welcome in the City of Roses.”
The game kicks off at 5.05pm.