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Readers signing up in droves to newspaper's sports text service

The Hull Daily Mail has launched a text-alert service for fans of the city’s biggest clubs.

Supporters of Hull City and the city’s two professional rugby league teams, Hull FC and Hull Kingston Rovers, can now receive breaking news about their club before it appears elsewhere.

The new Sports Flash service is the first time the Mail has delivered content by mobile. The service went live on Wednesday and within hours the sports desk team sent out their first alert with the exclusive news that Hull FC transfer target, Australian scrum half Michael Dobson, was signing for rivals Hull KR.

Sports Flash is already proving popular with more than 350 fans subscribing on the first day.

Mail Sports Flash offers separate services for each club – Tigers Flash, Hull FC Flash and Rovers Flash. Messages cost 10p on all networks except Vodafone which costs 12p. Fans sign up for the service by using Northcliffe’s dedicated shortcode introduced last year.

Mail senior assistant editor Paul Hartley said: “We were very conscious that people wouldn’t pay for news they have already heard or read elsewhere so we will only send out an SMS alert for major breaking stories which we know we can publish first and Mail exclusives.

“The message also carries a plug for the paper and our website. You can’t beat the convenience of mobile for finding out news quickly. However, the Mail and are still the place to go for the full details, reaction and analysis.”

The Sports Flash service is the latest stage in the roll out of mobile across the north east region of Northcliffe Media.

Paul added: “The potential of mobile for the delivery of content is huge. The SMS alerts is our first step down this road but we’ll be looking to exploit this technology further in the future.”