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THE FORWARD PASS | Shock changes for the 2021 NRL season

The fake news that’s actually fake.

The NRL will introduce some club changes for the 2021 season, bringing to number of sides to 18.
The St George-Illawarra Dragons’ merger will cease, with the St George Dragons and the Illawarra Steelers returning as separate entities for the first time since 1998.

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Since winning the premiership in 2010, St George-Illawarra have only made three finals series’, and are one of the wooden spoon favourites in 2020.

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“It’s a sad day, but necessary for the health of both clubs,” said Dragons coach Paul ‘Mary’ McGregor. “We’ve been rubbish as two clubs for ages, so we decided to bring the St George Dragons back. The board originally wanted Illawarra to die, but I’m an old Steelers boy, so I insisted that they carry on so I can can coach them. Not much changes for St George: they keep the same jersey, the same logo, the same home ground.”

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To create an even number, the NRL will fast-track Perth’s West Coast Pirates for the 2021 season. With nine games per round, there will be a new Saturday night triple header: with games at 5pm, 7pm, and 9pm.
The Pirates will play their home games at HBF Park.

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“Everyone’s been crying for a new Perth team since the Reds died,” said Australian Rugby League Commission Chairman Peter V’landys. “We had a wonderful reception from last year’s Origin and the NRL Nines this year. Channel Nine wanted a second Brisbane team fast-tracked, but we’re going to take our time with that and do it properly, so Nine can bloody well wait. There will be a second Brisbane team eventually.”
There is another factor to the Pirates’ promotion: the return of the Western Force to the new Australian-only Super Rugby comp.

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“We’ve been preparing Perth for re-entry for a while, but the Force’s unexpected return has forced us to accelerate. Rugby union may be dead in Australia, but we still can’t afford to give them any advantage,” said V’landys.
The Forward Pass is a fictional and deliberately ridiculous look at the NRL. References to real people is for satirical purposes only. Check it out on Twitter @thefwdpass
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