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Huddersfield, Wigan and St Helens

In the early 1960s Yorkshireman Mick Sullivan found himself at the centre of Lancashire Rugby League’s fiercest local rivalry. Three and a half years after moving from Huddersfield to Wigan, for a then record £9,500, Sullivan left Central Park to sign for St Helens.

He had made his first big money move from Huddersfield to Wigan in 1957 and spent three and a half years at Central Park. In his first season he was part of the Wigan team that beat Workington Town 13-9 in the 1958 Challenge Cup final, and the following year retained the Cup with a 30-13 win over Hull. He managed to get on the score sheet in both of those Wembley Finals.

Then, in 1961, Sully opted to join the ‘Saints’ for a new record fee of £11,500. He signed for St Helens just before the Challenge Cup deadline in 1961 and made his debut on January 16th when he played and scored at centre in a 22-15 home win against Hull. By the end of the season he found himself facing Wigan at Wembley as the two teams met in the Challenge Cup final for the first time. The match will always be remembered for Tom Van Vollenhoven’s length-of- the field try as Saints ran out 12-6 victors, giving Mick his third winners from three finals.