COVID-19 alert level change allows sports crowds to return, America's Cup to start

  • 05/03/2021

Fans will now be able to attend a handful of major sports events across the country, after the Government's announcement that alert levels will come down this weekend.

On Friday afternoon, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern confirmed that at Sunday 6am, Auckland will move down to alert level 2, while the rest of the country goes to level 1.

Tickets for the final double-header featuring the Blackcaps's final Twenty20 international against Australia and the White Ferns third Twenty20 against England at Wellington's Sky Stadium are now on sale.

Christchurch's OrangeTheory Stadium will also open its gates for Sunday's Crusaders v Hurricanes match, which was shifted from its originally scheduled Saturday kick-off in anticipation of the relaxed alert levels.

Also in Christchurch, the Silver Ferns' final Constellation Cup clash cup against Australia will now take place in front of what should be a packed Christchurch Arena, with tickets now available for purchase.

Tests three and four had originally been scheduled to be played at Baypark Arena in Tauranga, but were moved to Christchurch to minimise travel.

Meanwhile, the America's Cup has been given the green light to get underway from Wednesday, when the two opening races will take place between Emirates Team NZ and Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli.

There will then be two races per day from Friday through until Monday, then each day after that until a winner is crowned.

Racing under level 2 will be restricted to Course A and Course B. Most of the attractions at the Viaduct Harbour's Cup Village will be closed.

Sunday's Derby Day at Auckland's Ellerslie Racecourse can also now go ahead, but without crowds.

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