'We want Cup games played in full stadiums'

WITH the kickoff of the 2010 Fifa World Cup getting ever closer, the Local Organising Committee is hopeful that all match tickets will be sold out - well before the start of the tournament.

WITH the kickoff of the 2010 Fifa World Cup getting ever closer, the Local Organising Committee is hopeful that all match tickets will be sold out - well before the start of the tournament.

"We are well on track with regard to the sale of tickets, the demand is high, as you see at various ticketing centres," said soccer boss Irvin Khoza.

Khoza spoke to Sowetan at the unveiling of the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on Saturday, standing alongside Fifa president Sepp Blatter.

"We are happy with the ticket sales but still urge our people to buy in big numbers so that all matches are played in full stadiums," Khoza said.

"We are now sitting at 97percent in terms of the number of tickets sold, which is where Germany were two weeks prior to hosting the 2006 World Cup."

Polokwane is one of three host cities where the LOC and Fifa have urged the locals to buy tickets as their sales were lower than at other centres.

The other two host cities facing similar challenges are Rustenburg (Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace) and Nelspruit (Mbombela Stadium).

"We are happy that the stadiums have been completed, many people elsewhere in the world doubted our ability to deliver them on time for the World Cup," Khoza said.

"The arrival of Fifa president Sepp Blatter is a clear indication the 2010 World Cup is here, we are already feeling it."

Khoza added that they also were engaging the host cities regarding the installation of "beautification projects".

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