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Highlanders Will Leave Without Support

The New Zealand Rugby Union has underwritten the Highlanders finances for the next two years
But NZRU chief executive Steve Tew says that they cannot continue covering the Highlanders losses, and that regional support is required. Without much bigger crowds, it is the Dunedin City Council which will have to come up with the money to keep the franchise going.
The City is relying on Rugby to cover a large part of the Stadium’s operating costs. Unfortunately, Dunedin now desperately needs the Highlanders. This situation was predictable and was predicted by Stadium opponents, but is exactly what was wanted by Otago Rugby to ensure ratepayer support. Remember that the City Council is already guaranteeing Otago Rugby’s bank overdraft.
The situation will become even more gloomy if Otago fail to make the top seven in the National Championship this year, and are relegated to the Second Division for next Year.

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