Future vision for united Illawarra sports front

STEPPING UP: Wolves coach Luke Wilkshire, Dragons coach Paul McGregor and Hawks coach Matt Flinn. Picture: Sylvia Liber.
STEPPING UP: Wolves coach Luke Wilkshire, Dragons coach Paul McGregor and Hawks coach Matt Flinn. Picture: Sylvia Liber.

IT'S an unprecedented initiative, but Wollongong Wolves coach Luke Wikshire hopes next month's bushfire charity golf day is not the last collaboration for the region's big three sporting teams.

The brainchild of Wilkshire, the day on Monday February 3 will see players and staff from the Wolves, Hawks and Dragons come together to raise funds for bushfire relief on the South Coast.

The Dragons and the Hawks are the region's representatives on the national sporting stage while the reigning NPL champion Wolves still have long-term A-League ambitions.

While the circumstances are unfortunate on this occasion, Wilkshire hopes the partnerships can continue in future.

"Since I've got involved taking over the Wolves I've always been interested in the other codes and looking to build relationships with the Hawks and Dragons," Wilkshire said.

"I think it's important the sporting identities, the three major ones, come together and obviously this occasion has brought us together.

"There's no hiding from the tragedy, it's in our region all the way down the coast and I think it's great, us [three clubs] being the leaders in sport to make an initiative and take a step.

"The moment we made contact there was no hesitation in making this happen.

"It's the first time it's happened and I hope it's not the last.

"We're representatives of the region in three different codes so it's important we make this region proud of these three sporting identities."

Both Matt Flinn and Paul McGregor jumped at the initiative having felt the effects of the fires up close.

"Getting three codes and three bands together to push an important fundraiser is pretty unique ," McGregor said.

"I was down the South Coast at the time. I got out on New Years' Eve, I was one of the last to leave around Lake Conjola- St Georges Basin.

"We've got a house and a van down there so, to see it live and so close... as soon as this was raised I thought it was a great opportunity for us and for the community to get right behind it and we need the community to get behind it because it's a time of need for a lot of people."