NT News

Last-gasp NSW bid for clash

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THE NSW government has launched an 11th-hour Covid plan to stop Queensland hosting this year’s NRL grand final.

NSW politician­s have explored the prospect of allowing Sydneyside­rs who have had the Covid vaccine to be cleared to attend Homebush for the NRL decider.

According to official figures, almost 2.5 million residents in NSW are fully vaccinated, theoretica­lly meaning the state could easily find 80,000 Covid-free footy fans to fill Stadium Australia for rugby league’s biggest day. With Sydney in full lockdown, the NRL faced playing games in empty stadiums in a multimilli­on-dollar economic blow, prompting the code to relocate the competitio­n to Queensland in July. But with the NSW government holding a 25-year contract to host the NRL grand final, they are going down swinging.

ARL Commission boss Peter V’landys is in delicate talks with the NSW and Queensland government­s and it is understood Suncorp Stadium is days away from being announced as the venue for the NRL grand final on Sunday, October 3.

The Covid vaccinatio­n plan was touted as one way to keep the NRL grand final in Sydney, but Suncorp is on the verge of hosting a historic decider.

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