Signed match-worn Vodafone Warriors and Penrith Panthers jerseys, exclusive footy memorabilia and even a dancing lesson with cult hero Manu Vatuvei will be up for auction this week as The Great Vodafone Warriors Charity Day comes to Mt Smart Stadium.
Among the collector’s items are a pair of the iconic Simon Mannering’s match-worn and signed boots and the match ball from his 300th NRL game as well as then-New Zealand coach Stephen Kearney’s personal 2008 Kiwis World Cup-winning jersey.
The 2019 edition of The Great Vodafone Warriors Charity Day coincides with the club’s NRL Heritage Round clash against the Panthers on Sunday (4.00pm kick-off).
The Vodafone Warriors are calling on all fans and partners to get behind the great cause as they strive to raise tens of thousands of dollars for charity partners KidsCan, Le Va, Paralympics New Zealand, Ronald McDonald House and Shine.
The club has already confirmed it will donate $1 from every ticket sold for Sunday’s game. The players have also agreed to donate and sign the jerseys they play in this weekend, with the Panthers generously offering to do the same with a handful of their own match-worn jerseys. These one-off items will be auctioned on Trade Me this Sunday once the final teams are confirmed.
He might be living in Australia these days but that hasn’t stopped retired superstar Mannering from offering his support to the fundraising initiative either.
Last year, Mannering made history as the first Vodafone Warriors player to bring up 300 NRL games for the club. And now footy tragics can own a slice of that history with the league legend donating the match ball from that game and a pair of signed boots in support of his old club’s charity partners.
But that’s not all. Fresh from his incredible triumph in Dancing With The Stars, club great Vatuvei and his dancing partner Loryn Reynolds have generously agreed to provide a private dance lesson to be auctioned for the cause. The dynamic duo will also perform a dance on the field at half-time this Sunday.
Match: Warriors v Panthers
Round 15 -
Venue: Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland
Vodafone Warriors head coach Kearney has also dug deep to help the cause, donating a jersey from the 2008 Rugby League World Cup final in which he coached the Kiwis to victory. The jersey, signed by both Kearney and then-Kiwi captain Nathan Cayless, is Kearney’s personal memento from the World Cup. It features his name monogrammed on the collar and was presented to him the night before the final.
Furthermore, Kearney has donated a signed Centenary Test jersey from 2008, his first match in charge of the Kiwis, which is signed by the whole squad.
Meanwhile, club sponsor G-Shock have offered up one of the very few remaining exclusive 25th season Vodafone Warriors watches to be sold at auction. Last week, fans snapped up the final stock in 12 hours when the watch went on sale and this item will be the last of its kind available to purchase.
The auctions will be live on Trade Me from 12pm on Tuesday, June 25. On game day, a number of key items donated by club sponsors, such as a whiskey or Champagne tasting with Pernod Ricard and a SKYCITY accommodation package, will be auctioned off in the corporate lounge.
Vodafone Warriors players and coaching staff, meanwhile, have gifted a number of exclusive memorabilia items that will form part of a silent auction that fans can bid on in the Entertainment Precinct next to the members’ clubrooms. Anyone who places a bid will also go in the draw to win prizes such as Chemist Warehouse vouchers, Powerade gear, MusclePharm supplements and much more.
At the gates, volunteers will also be armed with buckets to collect coins from generous supporters as they flood through the gates.
Adding further weight to the mix, ticketing partner Ticketmaster has agreed to donate all ticketing fees from tickets sold on game day while stadium caterer Epicure will chip in $1 from every beverage sold at its retail units.
The crew at Mazda, who had already kicked off the fundraising campaign at the charity day’s official launch breakfast by bidding generously on two key game day experiences, have also come to the party again. For every person who uses their GameFace Facebook filter on Sunday, they will donate a further $15 to the cause.
“The Great Vodafone Warriors Charity Day is a key date on our calendars every year,” Vodafone Warriors CEO Cameron George said.
“Thanks to our players and amazing partners, not to mention Manu and Loryn and Simon and Stephen, we are very excited about all the ways our supporters can get on board and help this wonderful cause.
“Get a ticket and get along this Sunday for the game that makes a difference. And if you can’t make the game, at least check out all the amazing auction items on Trade Me.”