England fans snap up DW Cup tickets

Australia's Jonathan Thurston scores a try despite the attentions of Sam Tomkins
Australia's Jonathan Thurston scores a try despite the attentions of Sam Tomkins

ORGANISERS reported a rush of tickets for the DW Stadium quarter-final after England were put on course for a knock-out match at the Wigan venue.

Their 28-20 defeat against Australia in Saturday’s World Cup opener virtually ensures Steve McNamara’s outfit will finish second in pool A.

And that set-up a quarter-final at the Warriors’ home ground.

World Cup bosses say 8,000 tickets have already been snapped up, many within the last two days since it became clear it would be the host nation coming to town.

Fans are turning out in force to back England – their next pool game, against Ireland at Huddersfield, has sold out and the following week’s match against Fiji at Hull’s KC Stadium is also set to be played out in front of a full-house.

RLWC2013 spokeman Martin Johnston said: “The fact England could be playing at the DW, ticket sales are quickly going up and up.”

Tickets are available priced from £7.50 concessions and £15 adults, as well as various deals for families and those taking in multiple games. More than 60,000 tickets have already been sold for the Old Trafford final on November 30.

Meanwhile, Italy captain Anthony Minichiello admitted he was tempted to join Wigan next season.

The full-back was targeted to replace Sam Tomkins, but opted to stay with Sydney Roosters. Wigan instead signed Matty Bowen. “Wigan is a great club with a great history, and if you were to come to Super League they are one of the top clubs you’d want to join,” he said.

“I was interested for sure. But it was hard to think of leaving the Roosters.”

WIGAN assistant coach Iestyn Harris has refused to rule out a move away from the club.

Shaun Wane’s No.2 has been linked with a role at Cardiff Blues. The Wales RL national boss said: “At this stage the World Cup is my priority.

“Any outside influence and any outside speculation is irrelevant to me at this stage.”

FORMER Warrior Matty Russell will be flying the flag for Scotland tonight.

Academy-product Russell scored three tries in two Wigan games during 2012 before leaving to join Gold Coast Titans.

The full-back, who was born in Irvine, said: “I’ll definitely be proud to play for Scotland. My mum is from Wigan but my dad is Scottish, and I always go up there as much as I can to see family.

“A few of my relatives are coming to the game.”

Russell will be back in Super League next season with Warrington.

“It would have been nice to get a few more games at Wigan but Sam Tomkins was there and playing really well, so I couldn’t complain,” he said.

“I enjoyed it in Australia but I got quite homesick. I’m looking forward to being at Warrington.”

The Bravehearts, coached by Wiganer Steve McCormack, face Tonga at a capacity Derwent Park in Workington.