Lousy crowds have Hawks in quandary

BASKETBALL

The Wollongong Hawks are hoping to boost their poor crowds with a free ticket offer for this Sunday's home game against Cairns.

Averaging a league-low 2300 fans this season, the Hawks will give away a child's ticket for every adult ticket sold as part of the club's Family Funday Sunday package.

After a slow start to the season, fifth-placed Wollongong (6-9) have won their past two games and five of their past eight.

"They have really shaken up the league and have caused some major upsets," Hawks general manager Stuart Wilkinson said.

"Unfortunately for us, though, they are doing it in front of an enthusiastic but small home crowd.

"We asked our fans what they wanted at the beginning of the season and I think, within reason, we have delivered on almost all of this."

Wilkinson is hoping the team's recent success leads to a rise in crowd figures.

"We knew we had to start winning if we wanted to see numbers increase, and now we are," he said.

"We knocked off the Perth Wildcats, who at one point in the season looked unbeatable. We beat the Kings twice. We beat Cairns. The momentum has shifted. Ask anyone who was at the venue.

"The atmosphere was electric and there is a real sense of pride that radiates around the stadium.

"Ticket sales and memberships are two of our most vital revenue streams. We understand price plays a critical role and, unfortunately for us, under our current model, our capacity to manage this is extremely limited and any big discounts ultimately hurt the club."

Tickets are available from the WIN Entertainment Centre Box Office and Ticketek.

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