The NRL have today previewed the 2019 season calendar after a meeting with all the clubs’ CEOs.
The 2019 season will kick off with the return of the Harvey Norman All Stars match in February as part of the pre-season schedule.
For the first time in rugby league history, Brisbane Magic Round will take place in May – where all eight games are to be played at Suncorp Stadium.
CEOs of all 16 clubs were today consulted on the proposed changes to the 2019 fixture, with NRL CEO Todd Greenberg saying negotiations will continue to take place regarding staging the opening match of the NRL premiership in the United States.
Greenberg said the particular game would take place in California one week before all other Round 1 matches in Australia.
“Significant work is required to make this game happen but it would be a sensational way to open the 2019 season,” Greenberg told NRL Media.
“We hope to be in a position to make a final decision on whether the event proceeds in the coming weeks.”
Pre-season will all be focused around the All Stars game, the World Club Challenge as well as the proposed overseas opening game.
Clubs are being urged to continue taking games to regional areas, while the second game of the 2019 State of Origin season will be played in Perth on a Sunday evening.
“The match is already close to being a sell-out – that’s how much interest there is in Origin in Perth,” Greenberg said.
“It is another example of how fans are keen to attend matches live when they have world class facilities.”
A new spin on the “Nines” concept of the game could be introduced as talks of a possible International Nines tournament are in the pipeline, with players to represent their country rather than their club.
Finally, a new look accreditation scheme has been presented to the CEO’s, which would see player agents be seen as professional service providers and their industry must be regulated as they must adhere to appropriate standards of service.
Below is the revised scheme, courtesy of NRL.com:
- Provide clear conduct and service standards that will be regulated accordingly
- Encourage a closer working relationship between the NRL, RLPA and agents
- Provide a voice for agents on matters affecting them and the game
- Introduce a revised agent accreditation entry process
- Ensure agents are subject to NRL Rules – like other participants in the game