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The Luck of the Irish?!?!

I get into work this morning, knowing full well that tickets for Ireland v France are going on sale at 9am this morning. So I grab a coffee and boot up my machine.

First things first, the monitor is all backwards (I run a dual screen laptop/monitor) and the primary is completely the wrong way round… I can’t work it out quickly so I’ll stick with the “Big Screen” until lunch time as I’ll be in meetings from 9.15am (I’ve delayed a meeting specifically so I can get these tickets).

08:54 IrishRugby.ie goes down. Spectacularly:

An error has occured. We apologise for any inconvenience caused – a technician has been notified of this fault.

I’d imagine the technician has been more than notified!

This message continues for quite some time….

09:04 Then suddenly I get a page of tickets, it takes forever to load… But it’s there. I scoot down to the two tickets I want. Click for 2. Race down to my details.. Skim over the terms and conditions.

Hit Submit.


Due to a temporary technical fault, we have made the decision to delay this morning’s ticket sales until 10am. We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience.

GRRRR!!! If I could get my hands on that technician!

09:33 The load ont he website seems to have settled, but they’re obviously reconfiguring things and frantically trying to be ready for 10am! Personally I reckon delaying it will just cause more of an influx at 10am. But we’ll see!
09:37 I’m keeping an eye on the site just in case they release them earlier to slow down the problem… It’s resulting in 500 Server Errors now, which really isn’t too healthy!
09:43 It’s back up – or at least parts of it is…. This is going to be interesting (and probably very frustrating)

Due to a temporary technical fault, we have made the decision to delay this morning’s ticket sales until 10am. We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience.



An error has occured. We apologise for any inconvenience caused – a technician has been notified of this fault.

This here technician has probably gone to the nearest pub, to drown his sorrows…


Due to a temporary technical fault, we have made the decision to delay this morning’s ticket sales until 11am. We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience.

I have a meeting at 10:30 that will last an hour, looks like my chances are blown!

10:23 I’ve carried on refreshing the site in a vain hope that they suddenly appear. It hasn’t crashed again yet, but that’s no real consolation!
11:12 I manage to get two tickets into my basket for the France game, hit confirm and then get a 500 Server error. Pants.. I get back around the pages and the France game is sold out 🙁
11:14 I’ve spoken to Emma, we try for England tickets knowing the price is going to be higher to fly over there for the weekend… The same thing happens I hit confirm and then get a 500 Server error. I get back around the pages and the England game is sold out 🙁
11:20 I try for Premium France tickets… They’re expensive, but they’ve all gone now as well.
11:22 I get two France tickets that have miraculously appeared into my basket… This thing might be on! I get passed through to SecPay to input my card details… Woohoo..
11:24 Secpay has been trying to process my payment for the last two minutes and eventually says:

Insufficient virtual circuits for number of requests : contact merchant.

Or some such other rubbish.

Hang on, I remember reading they reserve those tickets in your Irish Rugby account for 15 minutes!!!

11:27 The tickets are there I just have to complete them, back through to SECPay we go!
11:29 SECPay is still whirring away….
11:31 SECPay fails again, but I already have a window open with the tickets on the website available for me to go around again… I only have 15 minutes!!!
11:32 SECPay is still whirring away, and the tickets page says every event is sold out… They must all be in this funny reserved state that mine is, fighting with SECPay!!

If I have 16 transactions for SECPay on my Mastercard there’s going to be trouble!!! Or I’ll expect that many tickets….

11:35 Here we go again….

I have a reference number is there no way I can just ring up and give it to somebody to pay over the phone??

11:37 Hopefully because I’m continuing to put those tickets through they 15 minute counter keeps being reset?! I haven’t given up hope just yet (my Mastercard probably has!)
11:43 There’s a mail in my inbox that suggests that SECPay have managed to take a payment. Which is great. But they’re still in my basket with the IRFU?!?!?
11:44 Oh here we go, there’s two of those mails now!!! I’m only supposed to be able to buy two tickets… But this implies I might have 4… Going to email the support team, heaven knows what I’ve got!!
11:49 I’ve emailed the helpful chap who provided me with my registration number last week and the admin for payments at the IRFU.
11:50 The website now appears to take me back to front page everytime I login.
11:54 Autoreply back from the IRFU:

We apologise for the slow processing of the ticket sale. Please bear with us as the orders are going through. If the site appears unavailable please try again in a few minutes as the system is working very slowly.

And what appears to be yet another order in my inbox… I don’t know if I’ve managed to order or not now… I might have 6 damned tickets!!

11:55 And a fourth one – do I have 8 tickets?!?!? And £283 on my Mastercard 🙁 ?

I am now decidedly concerned….

12:10 I now have five!!!!

I’m either going to be the only person on the terraces at these games or I won’t have a ticket at all!


Due to high loading we have temporarliy suspended ticket sales.

hmmmm… I have them all!!


We have received a number of queries in regard to purchases that have already been made and we will be answering all of those queries over the next 24 hours. All competed orders will be confirmed by e-mail and any overpayments that may have occurred will be refunded prior to any further sale. We ask for your patience and we will reply directly to all members as soon as we can.

All completed purchases will be confirmed via email to members.

If an overpayment has occurred the member will be refunded direct to their card.

We appreciate your patience in this matter.

A new date for the rest of the sale will be announced once the process above is complete and the system is restored.

We would like to apologise to all of our members for the problems on the site this morning. The technical issues were beyond the control of the Irish Rugby Football Union and we feel it is in the best interest of our members and rugby fans to ensure that all of these issues are fully resolved before we resume the sale.

I’ll keep you posted…

This entry was posted on Thursday, August 28th, 2008 at 2:47 pm and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

Comments (3)


  1. Zippy Zach says:

    That does sound an awful lot like the luck of the Irish. I always have my close friends get me tickets for big events, that way they go through the stress and I have the comfort of knowing if they couldn’t get their hands on some, I probably couldn’t have either. Good luck!

  2. Keiron says:

    I need friends like yours!!

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