Old Trafford thriller 'a sign of things to come'
RFL Chief Executive Nigel Wood has hailed Wigan Warriors's 30-16 victory over Warrington Wolves as one of the greatest performances in the history of the Super League Grand Final.
Wigan fought back from being 16-2 down on Saturday night to clinch the 2013 title and become only the third club to complete a Super League and Challenge Cup double.
Wood today praised Wigan on winning a thrilling Grand Final - and predicted that Old Trafford has even more exciting drama in store in 2013 when it hosts the Rugby League World Cup 2013 final on Saturday November 30.
"I would like to congratulate Wigan Warriors on their success in winning a classic Super League Grand Final and on their fine achievement in adding the Super League trophy to the Tetley's Challenge Cup they won at Wembley in August," said Wood.
"The nature of Wigan's win was remarkable: to come back from 16-2 down showed great character and fortitude and is a credit to all the players and their head coach Shaun Wane, who must have delivered an inspiring half-time address to his team.
"The atmosphere at the Grand Final was electric, especially in the second half when Wigan staged a comeback that will live long in the memory of all who witnessed it.
"The 'Theatre of Dreams' once again lived up to its reputation as a terrific stage for sporting drama of the highest order, and I am delighted that we have reached agreement with Manchester United for the Grand Final to remain at the stadium until at least 2017.
"Old Trafford has a long-standing tradition of bringing out the best in great players and I am sure that will be the case when we return to the stadium on Saturday November 30 for the World Cup final.
"We are very fortunate indeed that after witnessing one of the best Super League Grand Finals of all time we now have the opportunity to catch the compelling drama of RLWC2013 and I hope that everyone who watched the excitement of Wigan's defeat of Warrington, either in person at Old Trafford or on Sky Sports, will take the opportunity to enjoy the World Cup at first hand.
"International Rugby League remains the pinnacle of the sport and there are some wonderful contests in store at a wide range of venues across the UK, France and Ireland, starting with the must-see double header in Cardiff on Saturday October 26, when the 14-nation tournament opens with England v Australia and Wales v Italy.
"Many of the stars who have shone most brightly in both the Super League and NRL Grand Finals this weekend will be in action that day and I would urge every sports fan to be at the Millennium Stadium to enjoy what will be a momentous day in the sport's history."
Tickets for the opening ceremony of RLWC2013 at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, featuring England v Australia (2.30pm) and Wales v Italy (4.30pm) on Saturday October 26 cost from just £20 for adults and £10 for concessions. To purchase please visit www.rlwc2013.com/tickets or call the 24-hour Ticket Hotline on 0844 847 2013.