|Rugby World Cup will vary kick-off times to maximise exposure|
Thursday, 16 September 2010 10:03
Organisers of the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand have said that 40 per cent of kick-offs will be at later times to maximise global television audiences.
As part of the plans, 19 of the 48 matches at the tournament will begin at 8pm (0900GMT) or later, so that they will take place between 8am and 10am in Britain, France, Italy and South Africa.
The kick-off times have been pushed back as late as possible to avoid matches being played in the early hours of the morning in countries where rugby is most popular.
Rugby New Zealand 2011 chief executive Martin Sneddon said: "We have achieved a good balance. If New Zealand is to make the most of the platform RWC 2011 gives us to showcase our country to the world, then we need to ensure we maximise the global television audience for key matches."
The quarter-finals are now scheduled to be 6pm-8.30pm double headers, while both the semis and the final will begin at 9pm.