The NSWRL’s premier competition, the Intrust Super Premiership NSW, will be broadcast live on Channel Nine in 2018 for the first time, in addition to increased coverage from FOX SPORTS, making it the most watched in the event’s history.
While full details of the draw are yet to be finalised, all 24 rounds of the regular season will feature in a 1pm Saturday live slot on the Nine Network, in addition to up to two games live each week on FOX SPORTS’ dedicated Rugby League channel, FOX LEAGUE, on Foxtel.
“We’ve worked really hard with the 12 clubs and the broadcasters to build a draw that will take the Intrust Super Premiership NSW competition to a bigger audience than ever before,” NSWRL General Manager of Football Barrie-Jon Mather said.
“Next season, with the support of Channel Nine, FOX LEAGUE and the NRL, the quality and the talent of the NRL’s next-generation will be on show for all to see.
“For the first time, free-to-air TV will showcase our state’s premier competition, highlighting the continued growth and quality of the league.”
It is likely the Channel Nine coverage will kick-off in Round One with the clash between St George Illawarra and Mounties at WIN Stadium.
Nine’s Director of Sport, Tom Malone said: “We’re very excited to be broadcasting the Intrust Super Premiership NSW competition in 2018. It’s a great competition with so much heritage and tribalism. It will be terrific to see the likes of the North Sydney Bears and Newtown Jets back at the centre of Sydney’s Rugby League television offering.”
The 2018 season will include three special rounds:
- Respect Round (Round 5, 7-8 April), in line with the start of the Junior League season
- Magic Round (Round 11, 19-20 May), which will see two triple-headers of Intrust Super Premiership NSW games, likely to be played at iconic venues Henson Park and North Sydney Oval
- Heritage Round (Round 20, 28-29 July), which will raise awareness and funds for Men of League.
For the full draw, click here.
Newtown Jets CEO, Stuart McCarthy said: “Henson Park is renowned for a great atmosphere for Intrust Super Premiership NSW games and I think it would be a wonderful afternoon.
“The more teams and the more groups of supporters who can come down and experience an old-fashioned day of afternoon football the better for everyone involved in the game.”
Another feature of the competition will be a number of double-headers with the new-look Jersey Flegg Cup (Under-20 competition) or other NSWRL competitions, rather than stand-alone games.
Intrust Super CEO Brendan O’Farrell said: “As a passionate supporter of grass-roots Rugby League, Intrust Super is delighted that fans will be treated with plenty of double-headers and special rounds. These events increase the level of excitement around the Intrust Super Premiership NSW matches and the game generally.
“Naturally, we are also excited about the prospect of having this fantastic competition screened on free-to-air television this season. This will do great things for the profile of the game and also help extend its reach to more loyal fans.”
NSWRL acknowledges the support of the NRL, and particularly David Silverton, in delivering such a great broadcast outcome for the competition.
Other key features in the draw include:
- Round 1: Premiers Penrith beginning their title defence at home against Wentworthville
- Round 3: Traditional rivals North Sydney Bears and Newtown Jets contesting for the Frank Hyde Shield
Round 13: Grand Final re-match as Wyong have the chance to avenge last season’s Grand Final heartache against the Panthers.
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