Editorial August 21 2018

It is a deal which brings with it much change.

Yet that change, in many ways, is also going to see many things remain the same for the St George Illawarra Dragons.

The Dragons will have a new owner with WIN Corporation taking a 50 per cent stake in the NRL club.

Along with that comes the backing of Wollongong multi-millionaire and WIN Corp owner Bruce Gordon. 

The deal secures the financial future of the club in the medium term with the Dragons' $6 million debt to the NRL to be repaid.

Bruce Gordon’s son Andrew will take over as the chairman of the club.

Outgoing chairman Brian Johnston now takes over the reigns as CEO replacing the outgoing CEO Peter Doust.

It finally brings to an ends a long period of  conjecture and speculation.

It is also likely to cement the club’s position at the Illawarra, which will please many of the Red V army who can now rest assured home games will be split between Kogarah and Wollongong’s WIN Stadium. 

The finalising of the deal came out of the blue and was announced in the media, including by the Illawarra Mercury, on Sunday ahead of an official announcement. 

WIN Corporation confirmed the deal on Monday. 

Earlier this year it was widely reported and accepted WIN had walked away from the deal leaving the Dragons’ fate open and undecided.

The inking of this deal changes all that for the short-term.

It means the Illawarra interests of the club will continue to be a strong priority.

With the Dragons heading into an NRL finals series, the news could not have come at a better time for the joint venture club.

The Dragons locked away their spot in this season’s NRL finals with a win over the Tigers at Leichhardt Oval on Saturday night.

The Dragons finish off the regular season with a home game against the Bulldogs on Sunday night and are away the following week in Newcastle. 

The Dragons are currently fourth on the NRL ladder and will need to win to stay in the top four.