The St George Illawarra Dragons have committed to playing home games at Wollongong’s WIN Stadium for a further five years, with six games scheduled for next season.
Presenting the new agreement during a press conference this morning, Dragons chief executive Peter Doust and NSW Sport and Recreation minister Graham Annesley said the deal ensured a long-term NRL connection to the Illawarra.
The agreement contains the option of a further five-year extension and comes after months of negotiations between the Dragons and Venues NSW.
The deal will continue to have the Dragons dividing their home games between the Wollongong venue and Kogarah’s WIN Jubilee Oval.
‘‘We’re here for six games in 2013 and we are now waiting for a draw from the NRL, which is not far away, and that will enable us to make sure we’ve got the right touches to our activities at WIN Stadium,’’ Doust said.
‘‘We had to strike a successful commercial deal for our business and when you’re looking at 10 years, there’s a lot of detail that needs to be worked through.
‘‘We just needed to make sure that it worked for us financially, because there’s a lot of alternatives around these days as people vy for marquee events that rugby league presents.’’
The announcement follows the completion of the stadium’s $31 million western grandstand in June.