Wigan Warriors: Willie Isa pinpoints what rugby league needs to do to continue its growth
Willie Isa says he wants to see more done to publicise the positives of rugby league in order to grow the sport.
The 33-year-old made his 250th Super League appearance at the weekend in Wigan Warriors’ 46-22 victory over Wakefield Trinity.
Isa states the competition has come a long way since his first game, but believes it could be made even bigger.
He said: “The sport has improved, it has to because times have changed. The way rugby league is played now is different to what it was two years ago, and if you look at 10 years ago there’s a huge difference.
“We are seen in a different light as players. The characters are shown a bit more through the media and we are more accepting.
“We’ve come a long way as a sport and I think it should be reflected a bit more in the media outlets.
“The negative stuff gets out before the good stuff.
“I think it’s important to show kids the future, and that no matter where you come from, you’re invited.
“That’s the beauty of rugby. We are very accessible as professionals and first team players. If you look at any other sports in England, you don’t see the same fan interaction.
“We should scream about that kind of stuff, I’m not kidding you. That’s what we should be writing about.
“It should get down to London. I’m not really happy when people say it's just a northern game. We need to do more to advertise. We can all do our bit.
“I think rugby league is in a good way, but we’ve got a long way to go to make this sport bigger in England.
“If you want to talk about the international game, I genuinely think there should be a week for games.
“They have it in the NRL, and I’d love to see England, Ireland and Wales down there.
“Two international weeks, send them all over because if you want them to be competitive they need to play those teams.
“I’d love to see Lancashire V Yorkshire back, why not? Why are we shying away from that?
“The more we push the boundaries, you don’t know how far this game can go.”