Fans’ all out rush for Olympic tickets
Posted Tuesday, June 26 2012 at 23:30
- ‘Mini London Olympic Games’ during last weekend’s national trials has seen the demand for the rare tickets soar
The promise of a refined “Kemboi Dance” by the World 3,000m steeplechase champion, Ezekiel Kemboi and the pledge by World 800m champion and record holder, David Rudisha to deliver what Kenyans want, has occasioned a rush for the Olympic tickets.
Described as a mini London Olympic Games, last weekend’s National trials has seen the demand for the rare tickets soar.
Yolanda Tavares Public Relations, the official ticket re-seller for London 2012 Olympic Games, on behalf of Kingdom Sports Group indicates that tickets for the cheapest price categories “A” to “E” ranging from 450 pounds (Sh58,500) to 20 pounds (Sh2,600) have all sold out after the weekend trials.
The PR firm’s managing director, Yolanda Andersen said tickets that are remaining are mainly in the most expensive price category “AA” that goes for 735 pounds (Sh94,250).
However, Andersen was not ready to disclose how many tickets have been sold referring us to the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK). Francis Paul, NOCK secretary-general said the issue of tickets have been sensitive but promised to avail the details today on how many tickets have been sold so far.
“The national trials seems to have triggered the rush and you know the norm in this country is for people to wait until the last days,” said Andersen, adding that those that sold like hot cakes are for athletics.
The point of interest will be the 3,000m steeplechase final that will be featured on August 5, alongside the 100m, 400m and 1,500m semi-finals and August 8, when the 800m final will be staged.
“The cheaper tickets on these days are all gone, but some people might be lucky since some might come back for re-sale,” said Andersen.
The turnout of over 15,000 spectators at the 30,000-seater Nyayo National Stadium on Saturday to witness Kenya’s crème de la crème in the world of athletics could have set the momentum.
It was perhaps the largest ever crowd since the arena filled to capacity when Nairobi hosted the Africa Championships in Athletics in 2010.
The enthusiasm, cheers and celebrations that almost blew away the roof tops at the arena was a clear indication that the country was in need of a major athletics championship besides the national trials and championships.
Athletics Kenya might have had a busy schedule over the last two weeks in selecting teams for the World Junior Champion and Africa Championships, but and overall organisation at the trials for the Olympic Games were perfect.
The arena was brimming with splendour as the athletes gave the country a sneak preview of what to expect at the London Summer Games.
The tall and powerful domineering figure of Rudisha was simply ursuping. What with the timely return of the 2008 Diamond League million dollar jackpot girl, Pamela Jelimo, who will be defending her Olympic 800m crown in London.
There splendid gun-to-tape performances just heightened the expectations of the Kenyans. Rudisha holds the two-lap race world record of 1:41.01 set in 2010 in Rieti, Italy. Before heading to Nairobi, Rudisha ran the fastest 800m on USA soil, winning the New York Diamond League meet in 1:41.74 on June 9.
The country will be waiting in bated breath as diminutive double world champion Vivian Cheruiyot “Pocket rocket” unleash her revolver in both 10,000m and 5,000m where Sally Kipyego will give the much needed back-up to wade off the possible resistance from Ethiopians.