The revised 2020 NRL Telstra Premiership draw will feature a blockbuster start and finish, traditional rivalries and 18 weeks of uninterrupted football for fans.
The NRL released the full draw for NRL Telstra Premiership today – exactly one week out from the game’s much-anticipated return.
When the season resumes on May 28, it will feature a 20-round schedule, a four week Finals series and an October 25 Grand Final.
Highlights of the resumed competition draw include:
· Key rivalries such as Broncos-Cowboys, Roosters-Rabbitohs, Dragons-Roosters, Eels-Wests Tigers, Storm-Sea Eagles, Eels-Bulldogs, Dragons-Sharks and Eels-Panthers featuring twice across the full season;
· The Grand Final re-match between Sydney Roosters and Canberra Raiders on Thursday night in Round 10;
· The traditional ANZAC match between St George Illawarra Dragons and Sydney Roosters will now be played on Thursday, August 6 (in Round 13) – the anniversary of the Battle of Lone Pine;
· A bumper final round which will include Broncos-Cowboys, Rabbitohs-Roosters and Wests Tigers-Eels.
The NRL also released the dates for the 2020 State of Origin Series and Women’s State of Origin.
· Game One on November 4
· Game Two on November 11
· Game Three on November 18
The Women’s Origin fixture will be played on Friday, November 13. Venues for all Origin matches will be determined later this year.
NRL Acting CEO Andrew Abdo said the 2020 season promises an exciting and unpredictable competition.
“After months of careful preparation and planning, the NRL Telstra Premiership is back and will be faster and tougher than ever before,” he said.
“Everyone has fought so hard to get the game back on the field. There are new fixtures and new venues, but when the players take the field, the desire to win will be that much higher given the sacrifices made to this point. The schedule of 18 uninterrupted weeks of football combined with the new rules to make the game faster, will deliver the heart-pounding entertainment fans expect.”
In announcing the draw, Mr Abdo also acknowledged the vital role the game’s partners had played to ensure the resumption of the competition.
“I want to thank all stakeholders including our naming rights partner Telstra for their continued support. I particularly want to thank our television broadcast partners Foxtel, Channel Nine and Sky New Zealand who will bring our game to millions of fans.
“And I want to acknowledge Chairman Peter V’landys, and the Commission for their leadership as well as the Clubs and Players for their united commitment and spirit to ensure the resumption of the competition.”
Mr Abdo said the rescheduling of the Origin series this year provided an enormous opportunity to provide fans with an uninterrupted series in November.
“The changes to the schedule this year have allowed Origin to be played after the Grand Final – which is a first for the game, 40 years after the birth of the country’s biggest sporting rivalry,” he said.
“And to have our women’s Origin match on prime time on a Friday night – just two days after Game Two of the men’s series – will make this two-week period an historic one for the sport.
“This season will offer storylines, drama and excitement that cannot be scripted. Kick-off cannot come soon enough for all of us.”
Fans who have already purchased tickets, NRL Hospitality or NRL Travel packages will be contacted directly by the NRL or Ticketek as soon as the venue for each State of Origin game has been confirmed.
A full copy of the draw is available at nrl.com/draw