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Widnes Vikings boss Steve O'Connor rallies fans
2:30pm Thursday 11th March 2010 in Vikings news
WIDNES Vikings chairman Steve O’Connor has issued a rallying cry to fans to turn out and support the team in their next home match against 2009 Grand Finalists Halifax.
Not only has the game on Thursday, March 18, been chosen to raise funds and awareness for male cancer charity Everyman but it is also a great opportunity for the town to once again show they are behind their club as it bids to return to the top flight.
Vikings, by far the best supported club in the Co-operative Championship last season with an average attendance of 3,808, won the Northern Rail Cup to meet the first criterion of playing success that allows them to apply for a Super League licence after narrowly missing out last time.
But, by reaching the Grand Final in 2009, so too have Barrow and Halifax and not every team can be successful in a bid for a Super League place.
O’Connor said: “The visit of last season’s Grand Finalists is combined with the visit of the television cameras to Stobart Stadium Halton for the first time in 2010.
“A big, loud crowd is important to start to build the momentum in a year that we hope will end with Grand Final success – and being awarded a Super League licence for 2012.
“This is the first time this season we can really showcase what Widnes can do, both on the field and off it.
“Our support for Everyman is part of what we want to do as a socially-aware club, but first we are a rugby club that wants to win matches. The Halifax match enables us to do both and it promises to be a great night’s entertainment.”
Vikings will play in a specially-designed ‘naked’ kit against Halifax on March 18, kick-off 7.30pm, at the Stobart Stadium Halton.
Tickets are on sale now priced from £7 for children and £13 for adults when bought before the day of the game and can be purchased from the O’Neills sports shop, Liebig Court, Widnes. Matchday tickets are £9 and £15 and will be sold from Stadium Fitness at Stobart Stadium Halton.
Vikings stars will be helping to raise money for Everyman this Saturday, too.
Several first-team players and Kemik the Viking will be at O’Neills between 11am and 11.30am before setting off on a parade through the town centre with collection buckets in hand.
The limited edition charity shirt which will be worn during the game will also be on sale, with O’Neills donating £5 for every shirt sold.
Alternatively, donations to Everyman can be made at justgiving.com/widnesvikings.
Meanwhile, Vikings return to Championship action against Sheffield Eagles at Don Valley Stadium on Sunday, kick off 3pm.
Vikings’ Challenge Cup third round tie at home to Wigan St Judes on Sunday was postponed because of a frozen pitch but was due to be played last night after the World had gone to press, with French outfit Lezignan to visit the winners in the next round on April 17/18.