Uncut's unrivaled coverage of of WKS Sląsk Wrocław in English is well known, but football isn't the only sport we care about. Wrocław has a number of other great teams across various sports, including volleyball, basketball, rugby and American football. All too often though, these sports are overshadowed and get a raw deal. Simply copying and pasting sporting event posters on social media tells people nothing, and Uncut knows that alone is not enough. That's why in this new series, we are visiting each club to give you a greater insight into local sport, and to let you know how to follow Wrocław's teams.
There are a number of questions people may have about attending local sport events. What is the atmosphere like? Where is the venue? How much are the tickets? Is it worth going? By answering these questions and more, we hope we can encourage more Wrocławians to come along and cheer their local sporting heroes. In the first edition of this feature, we headed to Hala Orbita to see the women's volleyball team in action. To find out more, read on …
Volleyball is considered as one of Poland's national sports, and is as popular as ever thanks to recent success in both the men's and women's game. After a rebranding process courtesy of investment from capital group Impel, Wrocław's women's team no longer play under the banner of Gwardia Wrocław. The new team are now called 'Impel Wrocław' and play in green and white, much like the city's football side. Despite the corporate name change however, Impel still have a good following. Fancy going then? Here is the lowdown:
Going to see Impel Wrocław is pretty cheap, at 15zl a standard ticket is cheaper than going to the cinema at the weekend, and 8zl less than going to the football. Students and pensioners pay just 8zl, while kids under 7 even go free. Unlike for the football, getting a ticket couldn't be any easier. Just go to the ticket office in any Empik outlet in town, and you can buy as many as you like no problem. You can also buy online on the ticket-pro website. There are no seat reservations however, so if you want a good viewing position it's best to head to the arena with plenty of time to spare. If you haven't had time to get a ticket in town or online, you can also buy at the door.
Hala Orbita (pictured above) is located next to the Millenium bridge in the west of the city. From the centre, take trams 31,32,33,20 or 10 to Wejherowska stop. From there it is about a 10 minute walk, but you could also choose take buses 119, 129 or 319 direct to Hala Orbita itself. The building is clean, comfortable and relatively modern, if not unspectacular. The arena does undeniably however, do a good job of fostering a great atmosphere. We'll move onto that next.
The open and friendly atmosphere at Impel Wrocław games has clearly attracted families, as there are large numbers of children happily running around the venue. For those young ones with short attention spans, there is even a children's entertainer at the hand to produce animal shaped balloons. The stadium announcer helps to bring a bit of colour and noise to the stadium, as do the passionate Impel Wrocław supporters club. This small band of enthusiasts chant throughout the game alongside their dedicated drummer, and occasionally launch a few buckets of ticker tape into the air in celebration.
Popcorn, confectionery and soft drinks are available at kiosks near the exits. Like the tickets, food and drink prices are also very reasonable – much less than you'd find at the cinema for example.
On our visit two weeks ago, Impel lost an entertaining match in 4 sets to champions Atom Trefl Sopot. Even for someone who isn't an avid volleyball fan, it was easy to appreciate the high degree of athleticism, skill, dedication and teamwork on show. Three of the four sets were won by just a matter of a couple of points, with various twists and turns along the way. Combined with the passionate yet fun atmosphere generated by the crowd, the entertainment was well worth the 15zl entrance fee. So why not go down to the next match and cheer on the team?
Impel are next in action this coming Saturday, when they take on Tauron MKS Dąbrowa Górnicza at Hala Orbita. The match starts at 17.00. As aforementioned, you can buy tickets on the door, from Empik outlets, or from the ticket-pro website. Let us know if you enjoyed the experience!