Rugby world cup tickets
Fans were left frustrated on the website landed page for hours on endrugbyworldcup.com

Rugby fans have been left frustrated and angered after the official World Cup ticket website ground to a halt as among the final 70,000 seats for the showcase tournament went on sale.

Tickets for dozens of matches, including England's previously sold out opening pool match against Fiji, were handed back by commercial partners and fans and put on sale at 10am on 31 March.

The demand, which initially saw five million applications for tickets during the first sales periods, returned for the final significant sale of seats and left dozens of supporters disappointed and in online queues for hours.

Despite many fans reporting problems with the website's landing page, organisers confirmed games at four of the 13 venues had completely sold out before confirmation that tickets for England v Fiji and New Zealand v Argentina were unavailable.

At the time of writing tickets for as many as 20 different matches including games involving Australia, Ireland, Wales and New Zealand are all available but many fans' complaints on social media suggest they are no closer to being successful.

Ticketmaster, the much castigated ticket agent who built the website that sold tickets for the London 2012 Olympics, are responsible for running ticket sales for the World Cup.

As fans became increasingly frustrated, hundreds of tickets continue to be available and uploaded on to third-party tickets website such as Stubhub.co.uk, where tickets the final on 31 October are priced at £59,000.

The delays come less than a week after England 2015 chief executive Debbie Jevans, formerly of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games, quit the organising committee.