Cricket News

Cricket World Cup to Crack Down on Ticket Resale Sites

Some secondary ticketing sites have reportedly been selling tickets to the Cricket World Cup for exorbitant prices. Organizers for the event have said that they plan to take legal action against these secondary ticket marketplaces, who are selling tickets to the event for as much as £12,000.

Secondary ticket seller Viagogo has reportedly been selling tickets to the upcoming ‘England vs. Australia’ match for as much as 104 times their face value. A World Cup spokesperson said on the matter, “We are working closely with lawyers to identify secondary ticket sites which infringe our terms and conditions. We are taking appropriate enforcement action against them as required.”

The Cricket World Cup, which will take place in the United Kingdom, is slated to start on May 30 and it will end on July 14. The increasing popularity of Cricket and live cricket betting is undeniable.  While it is not illegal in the U.K. to resell tickets to international cricket matches, the Cricket World Cup’s ticketing website does explicitly say that no tickets should be available for resale.

In an attempt to defend itself, Viagogo issued a statement that said, “Viagogo does not set ticket prices, sellers set their own prices, which may be above or below original face value. Where demand is high and tickets are limited, prices increase.”

England vs Australia match in Cricket World Cup 2019
England vs Australia match in Cricket World Cup 2019

The tickets for World Cup matches are divided into four categories: platinum, gold, silver and bronze. Viagogo is selling a pair of silver tickets to the already sold-out England-Australia match, which may be the most highly-anticipated showdown of the entire tournament, for a whopping £12,029 apiece. The tickets have a listed face value of just £115.

There are other matches involving England and India with tickets being listed at £12,029 apiece. Viagogo, like StubHub, is a third-party marketplace that allows sellers to sell tickets to those seeking tickets to events that may already be sold out.

Viagogo’s statement added, “Viagogo is a marketplace and doesn’t buy or sell tickets. Viagogo provides a platform for third-party sellers to sell tickets to event goers. Event organizers sometimes make claims that they will deny entry to people who have purchased resold tickets. These types of entry restrictions are highly unfair and in our view, unenforceable and illegal.”

Viagogo has not denied claims that they have previously approached supporters’ groups like the Barmy Army with plans of selling some of the tickets from the group’s allocation for England matches outside of the World Cup. When asked about that report, Viagogo replied, “All tickets on Viagogo are valid and it is perfectly legal to resell a ticket or give it to someone else if you want to.”

The Cricket World Cup’s website indicates that 36 of the 48 scheduled matches at this summer’s event in the United Kingdom are already sold out. The event’s website does have a resale page, but there are currently no tickets listed on the said page.

StubHub is another site reportedly selling tickets to the event for well north of their face value. A pair of gold tickets to the upcoming Pakistan vs. India match, which will take place at Old Trafford in Manchester on June 16, is being listed at £3,280 apiece. The face value of each ticket is £150.

india vs pakistan 2019 world cup schedule

The BBC asked StubHub about the matter, to which the company replied, “As a ticketing marketplace, StubHub does not set the price of tickets that appear on our site, the fans do. Importantly, the prices for the tickets mentioned are the ones listed, but as it is often the case, those are not necessarily the prices for which tickets sell. StubHub believes that fans should have the flexibility to use, transfer, donate or resell their tickets on the marketplace of their choice that provides them with the best user experience and consumer protections.”

Rakesh Patel, founder of Bharat Army, an India supporters’ group, believes cricket’s governing body should do more to make sure that resale prices do not get too out of control. He said, “Through ballots, tickets have got into the hands of people trying to make a quick buck. There have to be measures taken to stop these tickets getting into the wrong hands. Surely the ICC (International Cricket Council) can track genuine fans who turn up to matches and prioritize matches. It’s something that football clubs do. If they are serious about dealing with tickets that get onto secondary sites, they have to do something about it, otherwise, it will never stop.”

England will host South Africa at The Oval in the opening match of the 2019 Cricket World Cup on May 30.


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