NRL could welcome 100,000 to Origin series

The NRL could still have 100,000 fans attend the State of Origin series after they set their sights on filling Adelaide Oval to its COVID-safe capacity. South Australia’s border from NSW was given clearance to open from Wednesday night, allowing for interstate travel for the first time in six months. Queenslanders have also been able to […]

NRL could welcome 100,000 to Origin series

The NRL could still have 100,000 fans attend the State of Origin series after they set their sights on filling Adelaide Oval to its COVID-safe capacity.

South Australia’s border from NSW was given clearance to open from Wednesday night, allowing for interstate travel for the first time in six months.

Queenslanders have also been able to move freely into South Australia since June 19, meaning Maroons and Blues fans will have free passage to the game.

The move could save the NRL from the tricky situation of trying to sell the Origin series opener to locals only.

Adelaide’s capacity was lifted to 25,000 last weekend, and there are still hopes it could go beyond that for the AFL finals and Origin.

“Absolutely, we hope (it can sell out),” ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys told AAP.

“We always were hopeful the border would open so there would be a lot of people from NSW and Queensland could go to the game.

“The whole idea of the investment the South Australia Government makes is on visitation.

“It’s going to be great for us.”

V’landys is particularly wary about the status of the pandemic, having learnt too often this year that it can change within an hour.

However at this stage their decision to move Origin to the end of the season looks set to pay off.

Last year up to 15,000 people were believed to have travelled from interstate to Perth for Origin I, and similar numbers could again be on the cards for Adelaide.

ANZ Stadium will now be able to hold 40,000 for Origin II, while the Queensland Government is eying a rise to 75 per cent capacity for its major venues.

If approved by Game 3 on November 18, it would allow for almost 40,000 fans into the stadium and slightly over 100,000 for the series.

“I’m very excited about State of Origin having three consecutive games,” V’landys said.

“Especially if they are competitive, you could have a massive game up in Queensland.”

Meanwhile, the opening of South Australian borders is also set to make life easier for both the NSWRL and QRL.

While still requiring NRL approval, it now means they will likely be able to avoid a fly-in, fly-out scenario on match day.

Instead the most likely scenario is that players will spend just a couple of days in the city before the match while still in a COVID-safe bubble.

Source : The Roar More   

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BREAKING: Michael Hooper will remain as Wallabies captain for 2020

Michael Hooper will remain as Wallabies captain under new coach Dave Rennie for the 2020 season. The flanker was confirmed as the Australian skipper this afternoon, continuing in the role he has held full-time since 2017. “It’s an absolute honour to be the Wallabies captain and I want to thank Dave, the Wallabies management team […]

BREAKING: Michael Hooper will remain as Wallabies captain for 2020

Michael Hooper will remain as Wallabies captain under new coach Dave Rennie for the 2020 season.

The flanker was confirmed as the Australian skipper this afternoon, continuing in the role he has held full-time since 2017.

“It’s an absolute honour to be the Wallabies captain and I want to thank Dave, the Wallabies management team as well as Rugby Australia for their support and endorsement,” Hooper said.

“It’s a privilege to wear the Wallabies jersey, I feel proud to lead my teammates and to represent those players that have gone before and all Australians.

“I’m really excited about this group and the direction we are heading. We have already spent some quality time together, defining who we are and what we stand for and what we plan to achieve in the coming months.”

Hooper stepped away from the Waratahs captaincy this year and enjoyed a strong season in sky blue, but that didn’t prevent Rennie from sticking with him to lead the national side.

“I’ve been really impressed with Hoops. We’ve spoken a lot over the past nine months and it’s highlighted his passion and commitment,” Rennie said.

“He’s a good man with an outstanding work ethic and he’s a great role model for our young men coming through.

“He’s keen to lead, and is highly respected by the Wallaby family. In the end his appointment was a straightforward decision.”

The decision confirms Hooper as a sure-fire starter for the Wallabies when they take on the All Blacks in Bledisloe 1, cementing his place in a back row which is looming as a real area of strength for Australia.

However the announcement stated Hooper has been appointed “to lead Australia this international season”, opening the possibility of a change in leader in the coming years.

Hooper became the second-youngest player to captain the Wallabies when he filled in for Stephen Moore in 2014, his 22 years and 223 days putting him behind only legendary halfback Ken Catchpole, who was 21 when he took the captaincy.

Only John Eales and George Gregan played more Tests as skipper for Australia than Hooper, who has led the side on 46 occasions.

Source : The Roar More   

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