10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
Matthew Carroll Head of Rugby World Cup 2003, explaining the decision said that the ticket booklet offer to members of the rugby community and to sports fans has exceeded all expectations.
" In essence, we see no need to go on-line just yet given the quantity of ticket booklets received from across Australia. More than 55,000 booklets have so far been completed and sent for processing." "Those figures indicate that the ticket booklet programme has been successful, although it's too early to put a figure on match by match sales. We have an obligation to process all the applications through the ticket booklet offer before opening up sales on line. It's true to say that we are pleasantly surprised.
Carroll says the ARU is conducting a sampling process that will provide a clearer picture on the match by match sales early next week.
"It's a bit like an election campaign. The first booths are in, the results look very promising, but we need to know more."
The ticket booklet for sports fans has been available since October 20th and along with the earlier direct mailout to members of the Rugby community, applications remain open to November 24th.