Wigan and Hull fans already impressed with Wollongong ahead of the city hosting the first Super League Game outside Europe

Love the Gong: A photo of Wigan supporter Paul Bolton with Hull fans Julie & Andy Harper at WIN Stadium is attracting plenty of attention on social media.
Love the Gong: A photo of Wigan supporter Paul Bolton with Hull fans Julie & Andy Harper at WIN Stadium is attracting plenty of attention on social media.

With just one month until the first Super League Rugby League game outside Europe is played in Wollongong fans from Wigan and Hull fans are actively talking about the city.

Destination Wollongong is engaging many of them on social media in the lead up to the Wigan vs Hull encounter on February 10. General manager Mark Sleigh has been keeping a close eye on what international fans are saying and interacting with them. His team are receiving many questions. So he took the opportunity to invite some fans already in Australia on a tour of the city.

“They have been posting pictures including one on the ground at WIN Stadium. Many of other fans have seen it and are looking forward to being able to watch rugby league in front of the beach. They are getting really excited,” he said.

Ideal location: Hull supporters Ian and Julie Harper and Wigan fan Paul Botlon love Wollongong's warm, sunny and picturesque seaside location.

Ideal location: Hull supporters Ian and Julie Harper and Wigan fan Paul Botlon love Wollongong's warm, sunny and picturesque seaside location.

Julie and Andy Harper are Hull supporters visiting Australia on a three month sporting tour. They joined the Balmy Army at the cricket and are going to the tennis in Melbourne.

Mrs Harper said they had a wonderful day in Wollongong.

“The town is amazing and will look amazing in black and white and cherry and white next month,” she said.

“Some very excited fans are coming half way round the world to follow their teams. The Gong should be very excited. We just loved the town. Everyone was so nice. The ground was sensational. Wollongong is in for a treat that week by both sets of fans. The town will be painted black and white and cherry and white. With what Mark and his team have put together the real winner will be The Gong”.

Checking out Skydive the Beach

Checking out Skydive the Beach

Paul Bolton, of Cronulla, is a Wigan supporter who used to work for Wigan in community engagement. “I think Wollongong is going to have an amazing atmosphere. I really hope the locals take interest because they are going to love seeing the banter and chanting between us Wiganers and the Hull fans”.

Mr Sleigh said the lunch at City Beach was almost sold out because of the “huge demand from travelling fans”. Tickets are also selling fast for the game. “We are expecting up to 5000 visiting fans singing songs and wearing their club colours. It is something Wollongong won’t want to miss”. 

He said Steelers Club general manager Sharon Arrow is doing a sensational job interacting with fans from England. 

The Harpers and Mr Bolton met Shaun Timmins and Ian Milward at the club on Wednesday immediately after a tour of the stadium. They also visited Breakout, Skydive the Beach and Humber which is likely to be a popular watering hole for Hull fans because Humber is the name of a river and road bridge near Hull.

When in Wollongong get wet on the Big Wedgie

When in Wollongong get wet on the Big Wedgie

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