Mount Smart Stadium

Mt. Smart Stadium
Former names Ericsson Stadium (1995–2006)
Location 2 Beasley Avenue, Penrose, New Zealand
Coordinates 36°55′6″S 174°48′45″E / 36.91833°S 174.81250°E / -36.91833; 174.81250Coordinates: 36°55′6″S 174°48′45″E / 36.91833°S 174.81250°E / -36.91833; 174.81250
Owner Auckland Council
Operator Auckland Council
Capacity Rugby League / Rugby union / Football: 30,000
Concerts: 47,000
Surface Grass
Broke ground 1965
Opened 1967; 49 years ago
New Zealand Warriors (NRL) / (SL) (1995–present)
Auckland Vulcans (NSWRL) (2008-2013)
Football Kingz (NSL) (1999–2004)
Counties Manukau Rugby Union (ITM Cup) (2006–08)
1990 Commonwealth Games
Big Day Out Double Stages, Auckland 2007

Mt Smart Stadium (formerly known as Ericsson Stadium) is a stadium in Auckland, New Zealand. It is the home ground of National Rugby League team, the New Zealand Warriors. Built within the quarried remnants of the Rarotonga / Mount Smart volcanic cone, it is located 10 kilometres south of the city centre, in the suburb of Penrose.


The Mount Smart Domain Board was established in 1942 with the purpose of transforming the former quarry site into a public reserve. In 1953 a plan was approved for a sports stadium which was officially opened in 1967. In 1978 it hosted 3 matches of the World Series Cricket tour of New Zealand. The stadium hosted track and field events including the highly successful Pan Am series during the early 1980s.

During the 1988 Great Britain Lions tour the Auckland rugby league team defeated the tourists 30-14 at Mt Smart before a crowd of 8,000. Mount Smart hosted its first rugby league international on 23 July 1989 when New Zealand and Australia played the third test of the Kangaroos 1989 New Zealand Tour. In front of 15,000 fans Australia defeated the Kiwis 22-14 to wrap up the series 3-0.

The stadium was chosen as the Main Athletics Stadium as well as the opening and closing ceremonies venue of the 1990 Commonwealth Games. It was where the New Zealand national football team (the All Whites) played all their home qualifying games for the 1982 FIFA World Cup. This was the first occasion that New Zealand had qualified for a FIFA World Cup and the event captured the imagination of the nation with large crowds packing the stadium.

The Auckland Warriors' home ground record at the stadium is 32,174, who saw them play the Illawarra Steelers in Round 6 of the 1995 ARL season.[1] Ericsson Stadium was the host of the Super League's 1997 World Club Championship Final between Australian teams the Brisbane Broncos and Hunter Mariners. In front of 12,000 fans, the Broncos defeated the Mariners 36-12. Ericsson Stadium hosted three quarters of the 1999 Rugby League Tri-nations' games, including the final, which New Zealand lost 20–22.

The stadium is now owned by the Auckland Council, following the merger of Auckland's regional authorities.[2] During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the back of the grandstand roof at Mount Smart was used for Bungee jumping. Following the first rugby league test at the stadium in 1989, Australian captain Wally Lewis and team mate Peter Jackson both 'took the plunge'.

Naming rights

Panoramic image of Mt Smart Stadium photographed in 2006.

As of 12 July 2006, the stadium reverted to its original name, Mt Smart Stadium. In a press release, the Auckland Regional Council, owners of the stadium stated they had considered other offers, but felt they did not suit. Auckland Regional Council did not actively pursue a replacement sponsor.


The South Stand at Mt Smart Stadium, shot from the northern end of the stadium. Warriors Open Day, February 2005.

It currently serves as the home ground for the New Zealand Warriors of the Australian National Rugby League. It is the former home of the Football Kingz of the Australian National Soccer League; however, its A-League successor, the now defunct New Zealand Knights, played on the other side of Waitemata Harbour at North Harbour Stadium.

The Athletics Ground (officially Mt Smart Stadium Number 2) hosts athletics meets, right down to Primary School Level. It also holds local rugby league matches and serves as the home ground for the Auckland franchise in the Bartercard Premiership.

Recent developments

The Eastern Stand, built in 1995 for the Warriors' first season, was dismantled at the conclusion of the 2003 National Rugby League season to make way for a new stand, with a roof, corporate and dining facilities, training facilities for the Warriors as well as offices for the team management, which was completed in late 2004. The stand as built over the remains of the running track to allow a closer view of the field, squaring the pitch off as a field sports only ground.

In preparation for the 2006 U2 Vertigo Tour concerts, the moveable North Stand was shifted to sit behind the South Stand, effectively doubling the size of the South Stand, leaving a hill at the North end. In 2010, in preparation for concerts by Bon Jovi and the U2 360° Tour, a large temporary stand was built on the northern hill to increase capacity of the venue to over 50,000 – up from approximately 42,000 in the 2006 concert configuration. However, the Bon Jovi concert was then held at the Vector Arena and only U2 performed two concerts there.

Rugby league test matches

A list of rugby league test and World Cup matches played at Mount Smart Stadium.

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.
Test# Date Result Attendance Notes
1 23 July 1989 Australia  def.  New Zealand 22–14 15,000 Played as part of the 1989-1992 World Cup
Played as part of the 1989 Trans-Tasman Test series
2 8 July 1990 Great Britain  def. New Zealand New Zealand 16–14 7,843 Played as part of the 1990 New Zealand vs Great Britain series
3 20 June 1993 New Zealand New Zealand drew with Australia Australia 14–14 22,994 Played as part of the 1993 Trans-Tasman Test series
4 9 June 1995 New Zealand New Zealand def.  France 22–6 15,000
5 18 October 1996 New Zealand New Zealand def. United Kingdom Great Britain 17–12 12,000 Played as part of the 1996 New Zealand vs Great Britain series
6 15 October 1999 New Zealand New Zealand def. Australia Australia 24–22 22,540 Played as part of the 1999 Tri-Nations
7 26 October 1999 New Zealand New Zealand def. United Kingdom Great Britain 26–4 14,040 Played as part of the 1999 Tri-Nations
8 5 November 1999 Australia Australia def. New Zealand New Zealand 22–20 21,204 1999 Tri-Nations Final
9 10 June 2001 New Zealand New Zealand def. France France 36–0 4,500
10 21 October 2005 Australia Australia def. New Zealand New Zealand 28–26 15,400 Played as part of the 2005 Tri-Nations
11 14 October 2006 Australia Australia def. New Zealand New Zealand 30–18 17,887 Played as part of the 2006 Tri-Nations
12 18 October 2008 New Zealand New Zealand def.  Tonga 56–8
13 16 October 2010 New Zealand New Zealand def.  Samoa 50–6 11,512
14 28 October 2017 New Zealand New Zealand vs.  Samoa 2017 World Cup fixture
15 25 November 2017 Winner QF number 3 vs. Winner QF number 4 2017 World Cup semi-final


The capacity of the stadium for concerts is roughly 47,000 people. This can be expanded to 60,000 when the temporary north and south stands are installed. A list of concerts held at the stadium are included in the table below.

Mount Smart Stadium was the Auckland venue of the Big Day Out music festival until 2012. In 2014, Western Springs Stadium served as the venue for the festival in Auckland. Among the concerts hosted, Rainbow Warrior Benefit Concert (Greenpeace 1986) featuring multiple artists including Neil Young on acoustic guitar and Jackson Browne, Graham Nash, Topp Twins, Dave Dobbyn and a Split Enz reunion[31] within Mt Smart Stadium.

A album of Maori artists who came to support the aims of the Mt. Smart Stadium project was released in 1981.[32] It was called The Mauri Hikitia. It reached no 4 on the New Zealand charts.[33] It featured Rhonda, Ken Kincaid, Deane Waretini, and the Lightwood family.[34]


  1. ONE Sport (2007-08-24). "Warriors sell-out crucial home game". Sport. New Zealand. Retrieved 2010-04-08.
  2. "Regional Facilities". Auckland Council. 12 April 2011.
  3. "Making their much-awaited return to Australia + New Zealand in February & March 2015". Frontier Touring. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  4. "Foo Fighters". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  5. "Foo Fighter return to NZ". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  6. Schulz, Chris (2015-02-22). "Concert review: Foo Fighters, Mt Smart Stadium". NZ Herald. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  7. "Eagles "History of the Eagles" Tour - 2nd Auckland show". 2014-06-19. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  8. Cawley, Rose (2015-03-15). "Review: The Eagles in Auckland". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  9. Baillie, Russell (2015-03-15). "Concert review: The Eagles at Mt Smart Stadium". NZ Herald. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  10. "Eagles Live in Concert". The Sound. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  11. "Fleetwood Mac". Under the Radar. 2015-03-20. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  12. "Fleetwood Mac". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  13. Jenkin, Lydia (2015-11-21). "Concert review: Fleetwood Mac, Mt Smart, Auckland". NZ Herald. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  14. "Second Fleetwood Mac concert for Auckland". 2015-04-01. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  15. "Fleetwood Mac Live in NZ". The Sound. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  16. "Ed Sheeran Announces Mt Smart Stadium Concert". 2015-04-30. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  17. Bache, Rachel (2015-12-13). "Review: Ed Sheeran, Mt Smart Stadium". NZ Herald. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  18. Yates, Siena (2015-12-13). "Review: Talented Ed Sheeran wows in tour finale in Auckland". Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  19. Aznuoni, Mario (2016-05-19). "Coldplay heading to Kiwi shores". Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  20. Slade, Maria (2016-06-17). "Secondary school athletics moved from Mt Smart because of Coldplay concert". Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  21. Bamber, Shaun (2016-09-13). "Bruce Springsteen announces two NZ shows". Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  22. "Bruce Springsteen And The E Street Band Returning To New Zealand". Under The Radar. 2016-09-13. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  23. "Bruce Springsteen announces NZ tour". NewsHub. 2016-09-13. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  24. "Bruce Springsteen returning to New Zealand in 2017". Newstalk ZB. 2016-09-13. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  25. "Bringing the Purpose World Tour to Australian & New Zealand stadiums in March 2017". Frontier Touring. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  26. "Justin Bieber is bringing his Purpose World Tour to New Zealand". 2016-10-04. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  27. "Justin Bieber: NZ and Australian tour dates announced". 2016-10-04. Retrieved 2016-10-04.
  31. "Rainbow Warrior music festival". NZHistory. History Group of the New Zealand Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  32. National Library of New Zealand The Mauri Hikitia album (sound recording) / various artists.
  33. The Official NZ Music Charts 14 June 1981, CHART #287, Top 10 Compilation
  34. Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa Object: The Mauri Hikitia Album

External links

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