Yesterday, World Cup organisers revealed yesterday that the official tournament ball will honour rugby league legend Clive Sullivan.
The aptly name ‘Sully Ball’ will be used in all 61 games across the three tournaments next autumn as the men’s, women’s and wheelchair tournaments all take place at once in a history making show of togetherness in our great game.
Designed by Steeden in collaboration with the Sullivan family to represent the core values of the tournament, the sport’s history and the positive impact Sullivan had on the game, the ball can be purchased now via: shop.rlwc2021.com/collections/steeden.
He made his Great Britain debut in 1967 and helped guide his country to World Cup glory as captain in 1972.
The first black sportsman to captain a British national team, 50 years on from his superb 60 metre try in the World Cup Final, Sullivan is set to be the heart of next year’s tournament.
A Hull FC legend as their all-time leading try scorer, the ‘Sully Ball’ was unveiled at the MKM stadium a ground which will host three games at the World Cup next year.
Jon Dutton, RLWC2021 Chief Executive, said: “Clive Sullivan is a true British sporting icon. A pioneer in our sport and the captain of the last British Rugby League World Cup winning team.”
“It is important to celebrate the rich and vibrant heritage that the sport has and this is a wonderful opportunity to bring to life a key moment from past history. What Clive achieved in Rugby League is phenomenal and the wider impact he had in sport and society will always be remembered.”
“We are thankful to the Sullivan family and Steeden for their support and for the opportunity to honour Clive during the 50-year anniversary of the 1972 World Cup winning team at the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup next autumn.”
Meanwhile, Sullivan’s son Anthony, a former Wales and Great Britain international, said: “My father would be both honoured and humbled to see his achievements recognised in this manner. He would, I am sure, take this opportunity to pay tribute to his teammates and the staff involved in that inspirational World Cup victory.
“For all of the family it will be very special to see him appreciated in this way and for his name to positively impact future generations within the sport.”