The Wellington Phoenix and Rotorua District Council have confirmed Rotorua will play host to its inaugural Hyundai A-League fixture this spring.
2012/13 A-League Champions the Central Coast Mariners will travel to the city to take on the Wellington Phoenix, NZ-s only professional football club, in an official A-League pre-season match at Rotorua International Stadium on Sunday 22 September, 2013.
The Wellington Phoenix, with new Head Coach Ernie Merrick will travel to the city in the days leading up to the game to participate in activities with local football Clubs. The team, led by Captain Andrew Durante, will feature stalwarts Ben Sigmund, Paul Ifill and Vince Lia, alongside New Zealand Under 20-s representatives Louis Fenton and Tyler Boyd. Brand new Wellington Phoenix team member Carlos Hernandez will also feature.
Wellington Phoenix General Manager David Dome said that fixtures such as these enable football fans outside of the Capital city to experience professional football.
“By being able to host top class pre-season matches in regional centres, we are able to spread the coverage of the A-League across the country without losing the home base of Westpac Stadium in Wellington. We are thrilled with being able to play in Rotorua this season.”
WaiBoP Football Board member and President of Rotorua United Deryck Shaw noted that “The Rotorua and wider Bay of Plenty Football community is excited to have the Phoenix in Rotorua.
“It is hard to remember a bigger football event in Rotorua in the last 20 years! This game has given the local football community an opportunity to work together to create a Football Festival weekend with the Phoenix v Mariners fixture as the feature event.”
Tickets for the fixture will go on sale on Wednesday 17 July from Ticketmaster and Rotorua Convention Centre.