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Newcastle Named Host Of State Of Origin Game III

T
he NRL has announced Newcastle will host the State of Origin for the first time after the Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC) approved Game III’s relocation from Stadium Australia.

The move comes due to the continued COVID-19 pandemic across Greater Sydney, with the game set to host a 75% capacity crowd, with fans from Greater Sydney not permitted to attend.

Newcastle was reportedly chosen as host due to the popularity of rugby league in the region and the existence of no community transmission of COVID-19 in the area.

NRL CEO, Andrew Abdo, said: “This is a reward for the people of Newcastle and Hunter region.”

“These fans are among the most passionate fans in our game.

“They turn our and support the Knights every week and we are excited to bring Ampol State of Origin to Newcastle.

“One of the positives to come from the pandemic has been the opportunity to give passionate rugby league communities like Newcastle and Townsville the chance to host Origin when they otherwise wouldn’t,” he said.

Speaking on the support of the NSW Government in allowing the game to be hosted in the state, Abdo said: “In particular, the commission would like to acknowledge the support of deputy premier John Barilaro, treasurer Dominic Perrottet and minister for jobs, investment and tourism Stuart Ayres for their efforts in making this possible.”

“We also thank all state governments who have shown a very strong interest in our content.

“There’s currently no community transmission in Newcastle and it represents a safe option for both our players and the community.

“We will continue to follow all NSW public health orders for the game.

“I would like to thank both state teams for their patience in allowing us to secure a safe venue with the capability of a passionate crowd,” Abdo said.