Rugby League World Cup Chief Executive Jon Dutton has apologised for the disrupted start to the tournament that resulted in a delayed kick-off to the opening game between England and Samoa.
A technical fault at St James’ Park saw the PA system fail which prevented the announcements for the trophy deliveries pre-match and also meant headline act Kaiser Chiefs only performed one song.
Thankfully, the fans, alongside the Kaiser Chiefs, kept the atmosphere going despite the problems, but for the organisers it was a disappointing start despite all the effort that went into the opening event.
Speaking on Twitter, Dutton apologised stating: “I would like to sincerely apologise for the disrupted tournament welcome, which was severely affected by technical failure.
“It wasn’t the start we wanted but I would like to thank everyone for their patience and for continuing to support the teams and the tournament.”
I would like to sincerely apologise for the disrupted tournament welcome, which was severely affected by technical failure.
It wasn’t the start we wanted but I would like to thank everyone for their patience and for continuing to support the teams and the tournament.
— Jon Dutton (@jon_dutton72) October 15, 2022
Thankfully, by the time the players entered the field of play, the PA system was resolved and the match at St James’ Park was able to get underway with only a slight delay.
The delay certainly didn’t seem to have a bad influence on England who raced into an 18-0 lead in front of the 45,000-strong crowd.
There was also an issue with the screen in the stadium, with some video referee calls not shown on the big screen with referee Ashlet Klein having to indicate the video refs decision on the field.
Hopefully this will be the last of the issues as the tournament progresses, especially given the exposure of the World Cup and the effort that has gone into making the tournamant happen.