Wolfpack Hold 2020 Media Day in Manchester
23/01/2020 by Aiden McNicholas
Worldwide media descended on the home of English football giants Manchester City yesterday as Toronto Wolfpack officially launched their 2020 Super League campaign with a media day at Etihad Campus.
With the entire 23-man squad in attendance, Head Coach Brian McDermott, CEO Bob Hunter, Captain Josh McCrone, marquee signing Sonny Bill Williams and veteran international Jon Wilkin took the stage to discuss the Wolfpack’s journey with gathered press, sponsors and partners.
Williams absorbed much of the attention throughout, with the question of his availability for the opening round proving a hot topic. After sitting out the pre-season friendly against Castleford, the same opponent the Wolfpack will face on February 2 to kick off their season, Williams spoke of his readiness to take the field and begin his tenure with the Club.
“Obviously I’ve been conditioned to play the 15-man game for the last five years so I’ve got to try to get my running legs. That is a bit of process but come round one I should be really fit. The goal in the early part of the season will be just doing the little things well, working hard and trying to fit in. I want to be flying at the end of the year.”
Given the Wolfpack’s historic rise to Super League, an achievement that has come ahead of schedule, the future of Rugby League was well and truly on the agenda and McDermott spoke passionately about his love of the game, the direction he believes it must head and the role his team can play in moving the sport forward.
“I’m really excited to be part of a team that I believe could change the face of Rugby League in the Northern Hemisphere. Another 25 years of Super League doing what we’ve been doing is not the answer. I can’t tell you what the answer is but I can tell you what the answer isn’t and that’s repeatedly doing what we’ve been doing.
The responsibility of continuing this journey of making this game bigger than its ever been lies with us and maybe Catalans and maybe another that’s outside the UK. I think maybe another two teams added on the same lines of Toronto Wolfpack would change the whole game.”
Chairman Bob Hunter also elaborated on the Club’s plans to continue to find innovative ways to grow the game, with one suggested plan being for Toronto to host the touring Australian National Team at BMO Field in October following the conclusion of the Super League season. While far from being confirmed, Hunter has been in contact with officials from Australia and believes an agreement is possible for a ground-breaking fixture sure to delight fans from all over the world.
The Wolfpack’s historic Super League Season Opener takes place on February 2 as part of a thrilling double-header at Headingley Stadium, home of Leeds Rhinos. The Wolfpack take the field at 2.30pm local time against Castleford Tigers before Leeds face off against Hull FC at 4.45pm. Tickets are available now through Leeds Rhinos by clicking here.