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Ireland’s Six Nations defence met with rise in ticket costs

Ireland’s defence of its Six Nations title will feature the most expensive ticket pricing for rugby union events at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium.

The 2019 Six Nations falls in a year in which Ireland will have only two home games, but both are high-profile encounters in the form of Saturday’s opening match against England and France’s visit on March 10.

The Irish Times newspaper notes that this year’s prices for Six Nations games show a noticeable rise on both last year, when Ireland played three home games, and 2017, when the home nation last took on England and France at Aviva Stadium.

Category 1 tickets for Saturday’s England clash have been set at €115 (£100/$131), with Category 2 coming in at €105. Premium seats are priced at €150, with Category 3 and 4 selling at €85 and €65, respectively.

The Times notes that football’s 2011 UEFA Europa League final, which saw FC Porto win a battle of Portuguese clubs 1-0 against Braga, represents the only match in any sporting event that has been held in Ireland to have exceeded this year’s Six Nations prices. Category 1 tickets for that match at Aviva Stadium were priced at €135.

The newspaper added that tickets for Six Nations home matches against England and France have increased in price since 2013 at a rate of just under 28% for a period in which the inflation rate in Ireland measures 1.6%. Category 1 tickets in 2013 were set at €90.

Last year’s most expensive Six Nations game was the match against Wales, with premium tickets priced at €125, Category 1 at €95, Category 2 at €80, Category 3 at €65 and Category 4 at €50. This year’s two games make for an increase of between €15 and €25 in relation to 2018’s Wales match.

The Six Nations is a key part of the Irish Rugby Football Union’s business model and is said to generate around 80% of its annual revenue.

Image: Aviva