Giant Rugby Ball heads to Sydney

Artist's impression of the giant rugby ball on the Sydney waterfront.
Artist's impression of the giant rugby ball on the Sydney waterfront.

New Zealand's Giant Rugby Ball will make its fourth and final international appearance at Sydney's Circular Quay in September.

Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism John Key says the eye catching 25-metre-long Giant Rugby Ball will be placed alongside the Overseas Passenger Terminal at Circular Quay, with views of the iconic Sydney Opera House, between 2 and 12 September.

"I am delighted the Giant Rugby Ball's final international outing will be in Australia, New Zealand's largest international tourism market and one that will be of huge importance for next year's Rugby World Cup."

The inflatable Ball is a state-of-the-art venue which takes five days to construct and can fit 220 people inside. It will cost Tourism New Zealand $1.4 million to put up in Sydney.

During the day the Ball provides a multi-media experience promoting New Zealand's tourism offerings and at night it will be used to host trade and industry events showcasing the best of New Zealand.

"With the start of Rugby World Cup 2011 only one year away, the Giant Rugby Ball will showcase New Zealand's culture, landscapes and heritage to Australians to raise awareness of what's in store for rugby fans travelling here for the tournament," said Mr Key.

The Giant Rugby Ball's presence in Sydney has been timed for the beginning of the one year to go countdown to Rugby World Cup on 9 September and the Bledisloe Cup match to be played in the city on 11 September.

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