Coronavirus: Wellington sports events rescheduled under COVID-19 Level 2 protocols

Saturday's Māori All Blacks v Manu Samoa rugby shodown will take place without spectators, with Wellington entering COVID-19 Alert Level 2 protocols this week.

From 6pm Tuesday, the Government has ordered a partial lockdown of the region, after an Australian traveller tested positive, after spending last weekend in Wellington. The restrictions will extend until at least midnight Sunday.

Scheduled for Sky Stadium on Saturday, the encounter between the iconic Pacific rivals will now open the international season for a TV audience only, with a second meeting at Auckland's Mt Smart Stadium on July 3. 

"We are disappointed not to be playing in front of our fans for the first game against the Māori All Blacks in Wellington, due to the impact of COVID restrictions," says Samoa coach Seilala Mapusua.

"The wellbeing of the public is priority and we know our fans will tune into Sky Sport to watch the game."

Meanwhile, the Wellington Sports & Active Recreations Awards and Wellington Marathon are among the first events rescheduled.

The Wellington Sport & Active Recreation Awards have become the first victim of the regulations that limit gatherings to less than 100 people.

Scheduled for TSB Stadium on Wednesday, the function will now take place online, with refunds to all ticketholders.

Wellington Marathon runners
Wellington Marathon runners. Photo credit: Getty

"Instead of the in-person event, we will be bringing to you a special, virtual edition of the awards this evening," organisers have posted on their website.

"We will be sharing more details, and contacting attendees directly around refunds for everyone and accessing the virtual awards this afternoon. We appreciate your patience, as we work through these details and finalise logistics."

Cricketers Devon Conway, Amelia Kerr and Sophie Devine, Silver Ferns captain Ameliaranne Ekenasio, Olympic swimmer Lewis Clareburt, America's Cup sailor Josh Junior and All Black Ardie Savea are among the contenders for sportsman and sportswoman honours.

For marathon competitors, this will be the second consecutive year their event has been delayed, after the coronavirus forced postponement of last year's event. Last year, entries were rolled over to this year and runners now face that prospect again.

"Due to Wellington being placed in a Level 2 COVID-19 restriction, we are forced to postpone this weekend's Wellington marathon," organisers have posted on their website. "At Level 2, no mass gatherings can be held.

"The event is now postponed until spring. We are looking at October 10 or 17, but there is a lot to work through with stadium, council, sponsors and volunteers. All entries and merchandise purchased thus far will be rolled over to the new date.

"As per conditions of entry, fees are non-refundable. Participants unavailable on the new date will be able to defer their entry to 2022."

Other major events facing postponement or spectator limits include:

  • Māori All Blacks v Manu Samoa rugby international at Sky Stadium, Saturday
  • NZ squash championships at Hutt City Squash, June 25-27
  • Central Pulse v Mainland Tactix, ANZ Championship netball, Sunday
  • Wellington Saints v Hawke's Bay Hawks, NBL, Sunday

More to come