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'Leinster still some way short of offering full houses in a safe environment' - CEO Mick Dawson

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Leinster Rugby CEO Mick Dawson says the decision to cancel season tickets was “very difficult” but necessary. Photo: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Leinster Rugby CEO Mick Dawson says the decision to cancel season tickets was “very difficult” but necessary. Photo: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Leinster Rugby CEO Mick Dawson says the decision to cancel season tickets was “very difficult” but necessary. Photo: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Leinster CEO Mick Dawson has warned that despite today's next phase of lockdown-easing restrictions, his club is still some way off being able to welcome a full capacity at the RDS.

Dawson's comments come as Leinster announced their membership scheme for the 2020/21 season, which will see current season ticket holders offered exclusive priority.

This weekend will see New Zealand begin its domestic Super Rugby competition, which will not have any crowd limits.

Ireland, however, is a while away from reaching that encouraging stage, according to Dawson.

"Last Friday's announcement by the government was another hugely positive step in the right direction and hopefully that continues in the coming weeks and months but the reality is that we are still some way short of offering full houses in a safe environment for our supporters and staff," the Leinster chief said.

"Without match day revenue and season ticket sales, the club is taking a significant financial hit so this offering will allow us to offset some of that loss.

"We have worked closely with the OLSC (supporters club) on this, and with season ticket holders through the online survey last week and the official membership gives us what we believe to be a fair and equitable way of distributing what tickets do come available next season for each game to our season ticket holders.

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Leinster fans may have to wait until next season to pack out the RDS Arena again. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Leinster fans may have to wait until next season to pack out the RDS Arena again. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Leinster fans may have to wait until next season to pack out the RDS Arena again. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

"This won’t suit all and we are very conscious that some supporters for a variety of reasons may wish to sit this one out, and if that’s the case, we would like to assure them that their seat is secure for another year, that they don’t need to do anything but we look forward to seeing them hopefully back at the RDS Arena for the 2021/22 season."

Leinster had already confirmed that they have cancelled season ticket renewals, but it is hoped that this new initiative will be able to generate some of the lost revenue, as a result of Covid-19.

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The key highlights of the membership include:

  • Official membership available exclusively in the first instance to current season ticket holders
  • Membership will cost €120 with a range of exclusive benefits available to members only
  • Match tickets for 2020/21 season that become available will be available to members only
  • Credit from 2019/20 season can be put towards the official membership
  • Those that do not wish to become members, retain their option on a seat in 2021/22

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen urged supporters to remember the good days before Irish rugby is hopefully allowed to resume on the weekend of August 22.

"Some of the best moments of my time as a player and over the last few seasons as a coach have been made by our supporters," Cullen said.

"That 'sea of blue' as we've driven into the RDS or the Aviva and obviously the sights that greeted us in Bilbao, Newcastle and Glasgow. We understand now more than ever that they are special days.

"All our efforts will now be invested in representing the club and the supporters and hopefully finishing out the season on the field as best we can.

"We all look forward to running out in front of a packed RDS some day again, but for now we’ll continue to play our part and continue to adhere to the guidelines around social distancing."

If supporters have any queries, they have been encouraged to email:


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