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Black marketeers make hay

cricket Updated: May 19, 2009 01:37 IST
Hindustan Times
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Tickets for the April 18 opening-day doubleheader of IPL II in Cape Town were sold out hours after sales opened. After many more matches in front of packed stands, Sunday’s final here will also witness a full house.

All tickets for that game were gone in under an hour after sales opened and now there are reports that they are being sold for 60 times the market price.

Tickets for semi-finals - in Pretoria on Friday and in Johannesburg on Saturday - have also been sold out, which indicates how much interest the knockout matches of the competition have generated. The Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg accommodates 34,000, while the Supersport Park in Pretoria seats 20,000 spectators. “The last time the Wanderers witnessed a full house was during the ODI between South Africa and Australia last month,” said Natasha Stewart of the Wanderers tickets office on Monday afternoon. A fan came looking for ticket to the final only to be told that he was too late.

The huge demand for tickets has resulted in some unlawful activities as well. There have been reports in local dailies that tickets are being sold in the black market. According to a daily, a ticket to the final might cost someone anything between 1200 and 3000 rand.

Several people have been quoted in the local media saying that they have been victims of irregularities in the long queues for tickets. Some said that others got much more than the maximum number of tickets per person, some said people jumped queue and bribed their way in.