The Bendigo community is coming out in droves to support its WNBL team this season.
The Bendigo Bank Spirit is well on its way to breaking club box office, merchandise and raffle records.
So far this season, box office takings at home games are up 60 per cent on the same time last year.
Merchandise sales are up more than 600 per cent and match-day raffle ticket sales are up more than 250 per cent, when compared to the first six home games of the 2014-15 season.
Merchandise and raffle sales are already double that of the entire 2014-15 season.
Spirit Chairman Greg Bickley said the club, the coaches and the players are humbled with the community’s support.
“This club and this team live and breathe Bendigo, and it is pleasing to know that again this year, this city has fallen in love with the Spirit,” he said.
“Crowds are also up for the first half of the year. Together, these figures point towards growing momentum.
“We have made some tough decisions this year solely with the fans in mind, to ensure the Bendigo Spirit is around for many, many more seasons to come.
“We have a long way to go and we are grateful for the support the fans, sponsors and the wider community are showing us again this season. We will continue to work as hard as we can to make sure many more generations can enjoy being part of the #onespirit team.”
Mr Bickley said everyone at the club was working towards the same goal.
“The players, board, volunteers and coaching staff are all working closely together to contribute to the long-term success of the club, both on and off the court,” he said.
“We have seen a resurgence of volunteers offering their time and skill to help out around the club and that is wonderful to see.
“There is a real sense of co-operation and goodwill that is radiating through the club and I know the players feel it too
“We play our last game before Christmas on Friday, and it’s a big one. The team would love another strong crowd to help them get a win over the Sydney Uni Flames.
“The competition is wide open and the thing that might just get us over the line is the one thing we have plenty of — community support.”