Noor Ashikin Abdul Rahman
The New Paper
Thursday, Jun 12, 2014
He had queued overnight for 12 hours at the Singapore Indoor Stadium since Tuesday, not catching a wink.
Together with eight other "Directioners", 16-year-old student Muhammad Rydzwan Haikal was among the early birds at the venue yesterday morning, where some 200 fans had gathered despite the intense heat.
The start of the public sale of tickets to see their favourite act One Direction.
The English-Irish pop group will be in town next March for their first concert here at the new National Stadium. Despite the head start, Muhammad Rydzwan and his friends were not among the first in the queue.
Others, like students Nur Atikah Ismail and Sri Wahyuni Alwi, as well as nurse Nurul Amira Azman, had arrived as early as 7pm on Tuesday in the hope of securing prime spots.
Though it was only later that the trio, who braved a downpour that night, realised that they had to join an official queue. But these sleep-deprived avid Directioners were duly rewarded.
They could have bought tickets online or via telephone from Sports Hub Tix and at SingPost outlets to avoid running into technical hiccups.
But they preferred to make the trip to the Singapore Indoor Stadium box-office counter. Fans started screaming from 10am as soon as the first few laid their hands on their tickets priced between $88 and $388.
Muhammad Rydzwan, who shed tears of joy as soon as he purchased his Category 1 standing ticket worth $168.
He said: "I still have butterflies in my tummy, I waited three years for the boys to come. I can't lose this, I'm going to hide my ticket under my special couch!"
Eight of his friends, all of whom had bought tickets for seats at the same tier, thought of creative ways to ensure the safety of their golden tickets.
These included "In my diary", "In a frame" and "In my father's wardrobe".
The group of friends have already decided to queue - again - when One Direction come here next year.
"We have already discussed it since 2012. We plan to queue a week before the concert and take turns guarding our spots," student Nur Suryani Mohamed Sapiee, 22, declared.
The polytechnic student did not sleep all night and rushed straight to school for a final-year project meeting after getting her hands on her ticket.
Filipino engineer Oliver Esquierdo, 43, arrived some six hours after he touched down in the wee hours of the morning with his daughter Josalle, 13. Mr Esquierdo, who is in town for work and who bought a $148 ticket for his girl, said:
"She's a fanatic, every corner of her room is plastered with One Direction. Even though I'm a bit tired, I'm willing to do this is for her..."
According to an employee at the Sports Hub Tix counter, about 60 per cent of the tickets had been snapped up by 11am yesterday.
At 10 last night, tickets were still available, with the Sports Hub Tix website indicating "limited availability" for those costing $148 and $188, while those worth $388 were "selling out fast".
And while all walked away happy with tickets in hand, one Directioner went home empty-handed.
Student Wan Nabila Mohd Jalina, 16, was there to support her friend. She said: "Of course I'm a bit sad, but I just don't have the money at the moment."
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