10 Jun 2017

Prices, lack of presence deter Samoa rugby crowd

9:51 am on 10 June 2017

High ticket prices were not the only reason fans stayed away from the first ever Super Rugby in Samoa.

Apia Park has a capacity of about 8,000 but barely half of that turned up to witness the Blues 34-29 victory over the Reds last Friday.

All Blacks v Manu Samoa, Apia Park, 8 July 2015

Apia Park was packed when Manu Samoa hosted the All Blacks in 2015 but only half full for the Blues vs Reds clash. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Many fans vented on social media about the not-so-super prices, which started at 40 Tala for general admission and as much as 500 Tala - or $US200 - for a seat in the stands.

Our correspondent in Apia, Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia, said to Samoans and those on low incomes that's a lot of money.

"If they drop it down to 20 Tala for the general admission to the game, I gather there will be a lot of people there," he said.

"But at 40 Tala I think - and plus the long weekend, the Independence Celebrations - the low income people will think it's better to leave my 40 Tala to spend up until Sunday, because I won't go back to work until Monday."

Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia said it didn't help that the Blues only arrived in Samoa the day before the match, while the Reds spent five days in Apia and held coaching clinics and an opening training session for fans.

Kids watch on as the Queensland Reds train in Apia.

The Reds arrived five days before the match and held an open training session for local fans. Photo: Facebook / Queensland Reds