The RFL has had to draft in extra staff to cope with the massive demand for tickets for the Saints-Wigan derby at the Theatre of Dreams, which was confirmed last weekend when Wigan defeated defending champions Leeds Rhinos 26-6 and St Helens beat Huddersfield Giants 42-22.
The 2010 Engage Super League Grand Final will take place just five weeks after Warrington Wolves and Leeds Rhinos contested the Carnegie Challenge Cup in front of a sell-out crowd at Wembley and Old Trafford’s 72,600 capacity is likely to be tested next weekend.
“Grand Final ticket sales were already up year on year before the weekend and demand has been phenomenal since Wigan set up the mouth-watering derby,” said RFL Media Manager John Ledger.
“Thousands of fans missed out on tickets at Wembley because they left it too late and the message to anyone wanting to see what should be an absolute cracker is to purchase their ticket as soon as possible.
“We are bringing in extra staff to deal with the demand and staff from other RFL departments are being redeployed to the Ticket Office all next week to ensure all the tickets go out in time.”
Meanwhile, the 2010 Engage Super League play-offs have broken all box office records with the eight matches watched by an aggregate crowd of 96,703, a 40 per cent increase on 2009 when the eight ties attracted a combined attendance of 68,995.
“The high quality and competitiveness of Engage Super League XV has been reflected in the record-breaking attendances we have seen throughout the play-offs and I am sure that trend will continue all the way to the Grand Final,” added Ledger.
Saturday’s Grand Final will be the first time Wigan and St Helens have met at Old Trafford since 2000, when Saints won 29-16.
Saints will be appearing in their fifth successive final whilst Wigan are returning to Old Trafford for the first time since 2003, when they were defeated 25-12 by Bradford Bulls.