St George banks on the Dragons

With only a week to go before the 2004 NRL Season kicks off, St George Illawarra have kicked an important off field goal by announcing a four year Major Sponsorship deal with St.George Bank.

An existing minor sponsor since the club was a stand alone entity playing in the ARL Competition, St George Bank have upsized their commitment from Sleeve to Major Sponsor until 2007.

St George Illawarra Chief Executive Officer Peter Doust said he was thrilled the partnership between St.George Bank and the Dragons had evolved to Major Sponsorship level.

St.George Bank Group Executive, Personal Customers, Andrew Thorburn, said St.George Bank has a long association with the Dragons and both with their origins in the Illawarra, St George and Sutherland regions.

"We share a long history, our colours and emblems are similar ? but most importantly, even with our roots firmly implanted in our immediate community, our future extends much further beyond."

It is believed the sponsorship is worth considerably less than the $1 million asking price, but reflects value in a competitive sponsorship marketplace.

The sponsorship also poses an interesting question for the Illawarra Side of the merger. As a naming rights sponsor the team is now known as The St George Bank Dragons.