With delays experienced due to Covid, the Bay of Plenty Rugby Union is sadly unable to host Steamers or Volcanix matches at Rotorua International Stadium in 2022.
"We have experienced a series of delays with contractors undertaking the much needed resurfacing project of the no.1 playing field,” says Rotorua Lakes Council spokesperson Steve Watane.
"Initially, we hoped to have the new field operational by September. Unfortunately, further delays have meant we cannot use the field until November 1."
The delay has seen not only the re-location of Bunnings NPC matches, but also rugby league, football, and other events.
According to Watene and BOPRU GM of Partnerships and Engagements Neil Alton, the silver lining is that the completion of the project will reaffirm Rotorua International as a top-class facility in the Bay of Plenty.
"We are disappointed for our teams, commercial partners and supporters that in 2022 the Steamers or Volcanix will not be able to play at Rotorua International Stadium," says Alton.
"The stadium is acknowledged nationally as a superb venue, and while we can’t host games in 2022, we recognise the investment of RLC to undertake the resurfacing project, which will be significant. This work will ensure the venue can continue to host national events. We look forward to a return in 2023."
Steamers and Volcanix home games will be hosted at Blake Park and the Tauranga Domain respectively for the 2022 season.