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The Locker Cup Returns to Rugby League after 24 Years

The Locker Group is delighted to announce that their sponsorship of ‘The Locker Cup’, which ceased in the mid-1990s, has been re-instated this year following dialogue between Locker Chairman, Howard Platt, and Karl Fitzpatrick (CEO, Warrington Wolves).

All match proceeds are to be paid to the Wolves charitable foundation.

To mark the occasion, players and coaches from both Warrington and Wigan attended Locker’s Warrington Farrell Street factory for a series of press interviews and photographs promoting the event.

Locker were particularly honoured to welcome back former employee Mike Nicholas, who is also an ex Warrington player and former winner of the Locker Cup.

The Locker Cup fixture was played on Saturday 24th May between Wigan Warriors and Warrington Wolves as part of the Dacia Magic Weekend held at Anfield stadium in Liverpool.

Warrington Wolves’ nickname ‘The Wire’ confirms the strong historical relationship between the town and the wire industry, a relationship current Locker CEO, Andrew Campbell is keen to celebrate.

Having had a lifetime in the wire industry, the first time I went over to the Halliwell Jones and heard 12,000 people singing ‘The Wire’ I thought suddenly ‘I’m home, after all these years!…. We’re absolutely over the moon to rekindle The Locker Cup”.

On the day, Wolves beat Wigan Warriors by a resounding 26-14 to bring the Locker Cup home to Warrington.  Locker Director, Dominic Stott presented the trophy to the jubilant winning team on behalf of The Locker Group.

All proceeds from the match were donated to the Warrington Wolves charitable foundation.

History of the Locker Cup

Competition for the Locker Cup began as a pre-season friendly in 1938 between local rivals Wigan Warriors and Warrington Wolves.  In those days it was known as the Wardonia cup which was donated by a local firm for charity matches. The idea was that charities and amateur football in both towns would benefit from the proceeds.

Warrington won the inaugural Wardonia Cup on 20 August 1938, even though the match ended in a draw of 17-17.  Warrington team captain Jack Arkwright won the cup following the toss of a coin at Central Park, in front of a crowd of 8,000.

The proceeds of the Locker Cup matches were shared equally between the two clubs for distribution to local charities plus junior rugby league. For the first match each member of the winning team, Warrington received a case of cutlery as a memento of the occasion, whilst the Wigan players each received a clock.

Warrington managed to retain the trophy a year later with a 14-11 victory at Wilderspool, and for the 1972 season the trophy was renamed to The Locker Cup.

The Locker Cup was last played for on 6 August 1995, when Wigan beat Warrington 38-30 at Wilderspool. Unfortunately the launch of Super League in 1996 meant the end of the Locker Cup pre-season friendlies.

Overall, the trophy was played for on 53 separate occasions – 29 times as the Wardonia Cup with Warrington winning eight, Wigan winning 20 and one draw. As the Locker Cup both teams won 12 of the 24 matches.

It has been agreed that The Locker Cup will continue to be played for on an annual basis.

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