Hundreds of fans, including big numbers of junior players, took the chance to get a sighting, and even a hand on the FIFA silverware at Maidstone Park on Sunday 25 May.
FIFA’s U20’s tournament is being held in New Zealand a year from now and Sunday’s whistle-stop visit was part of a national promotional tour.
“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get up and close to such an iconic global trophy,” Upper Hutt City Football’s Phil Gorman says. It was great for our community to get the chance to feel a part of what will be a major worldwide sporting event.”
Sunday’s big winds meant a limiting to some of the activities planned for Sunday’s 90-minute event but there was time for club juniors to try out the inflatable football pitch on the Maidstone astro and a number of skill drills.
“The day also gave us the opportunity to display the first-class facility we have here to the FIFA operations team,” Gorman said. “Hopefully we will see more use of the ground by FIFA in 2015 in and around the time of the World Cup.”