- Canberra Stadium
stadium_name = Canberra Stadium
location = Bruce,
opened = 1977
Australian Sports Commission
lessee/operator = ACT Government
surface = Grass
former_names = Bruce Stadium
Canberra Raiders(NRL) ( 1990- )
ACT Brumbies (
Super 14) ( 1996- )
Canberra Stadium (originally known as Bruce Stadium) is a facility primarily used for
rugby leagueand rugby uniongames, located adjacent to the Australian Institute of Sportin Canberra, the capital of Australia. Bruce is the Canberra suburb where the stadium is located, and in turn Bruce was named after Stanley Bruce, Australian Prime Minister1923-1929.
Capacity is a nominal all-seated 25,011, the largest crowd being 28,753 for the 2004 Super 12 Final. The main grandstand is named after Canberra Raiders and Australian rugby league player
Mal Meninga, and a statue of another Raiders and Australian league representative Laurie Daleyadorns the main grandstand entrance. The eastern grandstand was named the Gregan/Larkham Grandstand on 28 April 2007, after Brumbies and Australia rugby union greats George Greganand Stephen Larkham. Both ended their international careers after the 2007 Rugby World Cupas the two most-capped players in Wallabies history, with Gregan at a world-record 139 and Larkham at 102.
The stadium is currently owned by the Australian Government through the
Australian Sports Commissionand leased to the Australian Capital Territory Government. While the current lease is due to expire in 2010, the ACT Government is seeking ownership of the stadium through a land transfer with the Australian Government.
Constructed in 1977 for the
Pacific Conference Games, it also was the venue for the 4th IAAF World Cup in Athletics. At the latter meet, the fastest 400m for women was recorded by East German Marita Koch- a time that still stands today.
The stadium has played host to several local sporting teams such as the Canberra City Arrows, 1977 - 1986 and
Canberra Cosmos, 1995 - 2001 ( football (soccer)) and the shortlived Canberra Bushrangers, 1993 - 1995 ( baseball). In 1990 the athletics track was removed, and the ground then became the home of the Canberra Raiders( rugby league) and, in 1996, the ACT Brumbies ( rugby union).
Further renovations occurred in 1997 in preparation for staging
football (soccer)matches as part of the 2000 Summer Olympicsin Sydney, which also in turn shrank the size of the playing field preventing any future Australian rules footballgames being played on the field. The final cost of the renovations was more than seven times what was originally anticipated by the territory government of the time, and the subsequent controversy ended the career of then Chief Minister Kate Carnell. During the lead-up, on 29 May 2000, unseasonal snow fell during a match between the Raiders and the Wests Tigers, the only such event in National Rugby Leaguehistory, with the snow causing frost damage to the turf intended for the Olympic football tournament.
Olympic football in 2000 has initiated a stadium facelift converting the playing surface from oval to rectangular and bringing the crowd closer to the action. The only downside to this revamp is the stadium can no longer host AFL games. It is now an all-seater rectangular stadium with two main grandstands on either side of the playing field.
* Super 12
Rugby unionFinal 2000, 2001, 2004
* Four Group Matches from the
2003 Rugby World Cupwere also played at the stadium.
1990, the stadium hosted an International Rulesmatch (a combination of Gaelic footballand Australian rules football) between Irelandand Australia.
Kanga CupInternational Youth Soccer Tournament.
* [http://www.canberrastadium.com.au Official site]
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