Thousands of seats unsold as England vs New Zealand Test at Lord’s just two days away

England’s opening fixture of the season, against New Zealand at Lord’s from June 2, could see thousands of empty seats despite the fact that Ben Stokes begins his new era as captain and the match has been designated as “Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Test”.

A report in The Daily Telegraph said that 20,000 seats have gone unsold over the first four days against the Kane Williamson-led side, the reigning World Test champions.

The report added that high price of tickets has been cited by Barmy Army as the reason for the sluggish ticket sales. With tickets being priced at 160 pounds “amid the cost of living crisis”, the ticket sales have been slow, according to the report.

“As of Monday evening, Lord’s was still advertising 1800 tickets as available on day one, 2500 on day two, 4600 on day three and 9600 on day four. Usually a Lord’s Test to open the English summer is the hottest ticket in town,” the report said.

“It has to be price,” Chris Millard, managing director of the Barmy Army fan group, was quoted as saying in the report. “We do not get tickets at Lord’s as a group, but speaking to a lot of people who go every year they have been put off due to price and the cost of living crisis.”

Paul Burnham, co-founder of the Barmy Army, has blamed “the recession, Queen’s celebration, poor red-ball form and entertainment level very slow-poor and no Barmy trumpeter allowed” for the sluggish sales.

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