The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality is cementing its position as a preferred international sporting destination of choice, as the 2022 Carling Champions Match will be taking place at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on 2 July 2022.

Rugby fans can catch all the action live at the stadium when the fans-chosen Carling Champion Team is battling it out with the Azzuri-Italy A team from 7:45 pm.


During a state of a readiness media briefing on Tuesday, 29 June 2022, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium acting manager Zikhona Prince said the upcoming game was much needed by the City and the stadium following the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw no fans allowed at the stadium when games took place.



“These are the kind of events that we need not just for the stadium but for the Municipality as well as when we have such games, it does not only impact on the stadium alone, but there is a boost for tourism and revenue generation for the City. It’s a big event for us; it will put us in a position where we can bring more of these events to the City. Rugby fans can expect to entertain galore, we have two main acts; Naak Music and Heavy K, who are both from Gqeberha. We tried to look for people from Gqeberha to uplift the Bay at large. We also have some local artists who will be sharing the stage with the national artists,” Prince said.

Running for its second year now, the Championship promises to be jam-packed with entertainment, including a fan park, and fans can buy tickets at Ticketpro for only R49.


Carling Black Label brand manager Shaveer Badul said the concept of the Championship was to get fans to choose their own team from the seven unions in the Carling Currie Cup and get them to play against an international team.

“We decided to bring it to the NMB Stadium this year as the Eastern Cape is really a rugby stronghold; it’s a community where people love and know their rugby. It’s a great opportunity to inspire the province and bring something special to NMB. It’s a beautiful city with world-class facilities,” said Badul.

Fans are encouraged to vote for their Carling Champions Captain; voting closes on 1 July at 10 am, and they can also vote for the Man of the Match on 2 July on match day and stand a chance to win R51 000.