NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 28: Kayln Ponga of the Newcastle Knights breaks through the defence during the round 7 NRL match between the Newcastle Knights and Parramatta Eels at McDonald Jones Stadium on April 28, 2019 in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Ashley Feder/Getty Images)

The ARL Commission has started looking into the possibility of splitting game into quarters to increase broadcast revenue in the next TV deal.

The move is reportedly led by new chairman Peter V'landys. He will chair a meeting on Thursday that will discuss various proposed rule changes.

Some of the topics include golden point alternatives, captains challenges, the 20-40 rule and limiting on-field support.

Confirming information about the discussion has been hard to do after V'landys cracked down on staff leaking information tot he media.

One NRL insider stated that any changes to the rules "will not change the fabric of the game" but it remains to be seen how accurate that will be.

The move to divide games into four is not entirely out of nowhere, pre-season games have had quarters before as a method of minimising heat stress.

V'landys has been clear about his priorities for his tenure, raising the broadcast revenue beyond the $1.8 billion received in the last TV deal.

"There are a lot of decisions to be made in the next 12 months in relation to broadcast, but we will have it in a package that will maximise the return to the game," V'landys stated at his first press conference.

"To me, that is the most important aspect, to ensure the game stays viable. If you're not viable, you're nowhere. It's critical we continue to get the revenues we're getting."

The current contract with Channel Nine doesn't end until 2022 but the NRL wants look at its options now.

The quarters format would allow broadcasters more advertising time and could lead to less interchanges as players would receive more breaks.

The meeting will end on Thursday afternoon but any rule changes will not be announced until Friday morning.


  1. This is a stupid idea from people that seem to have no idea at all. They talk about reducing interchanges then come up with this garbage. Stop letting the media run this game.

  2. Apologies that this is so off topic, can anyone confirm that Vatuvei is the well known sportsman charged with supplying Meth????

  3. Another top idea from Vlandys. I wouldn’t stop there though, what about having separate teams for attack and defence, helmets for the players, and call the grand final the super bowl.

  4. Crazy. Like eels says we talk about bringing fatigue back into the game to make it a contest for the smaller guys and increase attacking flair and then they want to do this? Chuck that idea back in the pig pen where it belongs

  5. No no no no no. Emphatically NO!!!!
    If they want to improve the game they should reduce the interchange to 6, reduce injury time (it’s getting like Balmain in ‘69), introduce captain’s challenge (far too much time is wasted on useless referrals to the bunker; and I’m happy to put up with the inevitable mistakes because speeding up the game and reducing stoppages is more important) and get the trainers off the field.

  6. 38er, you nailed it, but I’ll chuck in an extra “NO” just in case, and to assist the Manly supporters (kidding).

  7. Yes of course this is what happens when you have Reta.r.ds governing the game. Even the are smarter then this bunch of reta.rds. What a shame that the game is being absolutely F* up by this bunch.

  8. One other thing, I agree with reviewing golden point. I’m no fan of golden point and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with a draw, but the way it is now it’s our version of penalty shoot-out although I get that it adds to excitement. But to me there’s too much chance about it. It’s a bit tough on the losing side if they never had possession in extra time.

  9. Once again……’s all about revenue first and the poor old fans second. The game is about teams building pressure and momentum. And 4 quarter football is going to kill that!

  10. 38er. I agree with you for the most part. Captain’s challenge is still going to waste time because someone has to review the decision, I HATE the 2 ref system. Too often they have differing views on decisions. Go back to one ref, and only go to the bunker on a captain’s challenge.

  11. And while we’re at it, get the effing on-field coaches (“trainers”) off. These highly paid players train all week so should be able to work out what to do next.

    Trainers should only be allowed on during the break for a try or goal.

  12. Wow! what a ridiculous idea. I seriously hope it doesn’t get through.

    As has been mentioned, we talk about bringing fatigue back into the game, splitting into quarters pretty much removes fatigue. We need fatigue, especially in big men, as that is when the skillful players shine and show how the game should be played.

    I do like the idea of cutting down the time trainers spend on the field, it is hard to fathom how grown men can’t follow simple game plans without needing constant coaching from trainers.

    I don’t like the 20-40 rule though. If a defensive line is able to trap a team in their “red zone” for a set, the attacking team should not be rewarded by a potential repeat set at the end through a kick just into the other teams half.

    Captains challenge sounds like a good idea, but it can’t be introduced in isolation. If we are going to do this, then also remove the second ref, and look at reducing the impact the video ref has on the game. We already go to the bunker for just about every try, and they take an age to make a decision, so the worrying thing about the captains challenge is further delaying the game, again reducing the fatigue factor.

    Finally, just get rid of golden point. If the scores are even after 80 minutes then so be it, a draw is still a result.

  13. They won’t get rid of golden point because of “commercial considerations” though I would drop it in a shot.

    Now lets not get our knickers in a twist. Vlandys is right to throw everything into the pot. Anything that has ever been mentioned by anyone should go in the pot. Its what comes out of the pot that matters.

    What the press have done is jumped on one stupid idea (probably from some no mark at Ch 9) and is using it to wind fans up.

  14. Stupid idea. As noted above – no opportunity to build pressure.

    @barry beath – also agree with getting the trainers off the filed. They are not allowed on in my kids JRL games, so why do the big boys need their hands held to tell them what to do for every set of six?????

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