The loose-forward starred for the Cherry & Whites between 1985-1991, signing for the Wigan Club for a then record £150,000. During this time he helped them to win one World Club Championship, four Challenge Cups, three Championships and one Premiership.
Ellery, who was last week voted as the greatest player ever to play for Great Britain, is the only player to receive the prestigious ‘Man of Steel’ award three times (twice as a Wigan player) and he was honoured with an MBE by Her Majesty the Queen in 1990 for his great service to the game. He also gained 34 caps for Great Britain.
Chairman Maurice Lindsay said,
“As this will be my last home game as Chairman of the Wigan Club I was anxious that we honoured possibly the greatest player that we have ever signed.
“The new Hall of Fame structure only allows two players to be inducted each year which ensures that we only recognise the absolute elite players who have represented the Club. Ellery unquestionably comes into that category”.
Reminiscing Lindsay added,
“There were times even in our great days when Ellery made the difference. I remember one particular game against Bradford when we were forced to play four games in one week.
“We had already played Castleford on Sunday, Widnes on Tuesday and we faced Bradford at Central Park on Thursday. We were exhausted and losing 18-2 at half time. In the second half Ellery put in an inspirational performance and we clawed our way back into the game to secure an 18-all draw.
“We went onto beat Leeds at Headingley on Saturday to complete the Grand Slam that season.
“That was typical of Ellery; he would never give in. He was the true spirit of the great Wigan side”.
“It will be a long time before we see another player like him, if we ever see one at all”.
Hanley, who made 202 appearances for the Club and scored 776 points, will be presented with a scroll in honour of his induction into the Wigan Hall of Fame before kick off on Friday at the conclusion of a spectacular line up of entertainment, more details of which will be announced during the week.
He will become the tenth inductee, joining Andy Gregory, Billy Boston MBE, Brian McTigue, Dean Bell, Eric Ashton MBE, Jim Sullivan, Joe Egan, Ken Gee and Shaun Edwards OBE.
Tickets are still available for the game from the JJB Stadium Ticket Office, Knowsley Road Ticket Office, Warriors Ticket Hotline on 0871 66-33-552, Saints Ticket Hotline on 0870 756-52-52 (option 1) and online by [clicking here].