The draw for the return of NRL Nines in 2020 was held in Perth today, with a number of mouth-watering match ups delivered from the event’s first-ever live draw.
Reigning NRL Nines and Sydney Roosters will be aiming to repeat their incredible feats of recent years with $1 million on the line to any club which completes the NRL Nines-NRL Telstra Premiership double.
NRL legends Brett Kimmorley and Roy Asotasi took turns in randomly selecting the teams out of an official NRL Nines barrel, alongside West Australian sporting icons Olivia Vivian, Matt Hodgson and Greg Hire.
Olivia Vivian was successful in drawing the sole NRL Nines WILDCARD and controversially elected to swap the positions of Cronulla Sharks and the Sydney Roosters.
The outcome of the switch was a resounding positive for fans, ensuring the Sharks take on rivals St George Illawarra Dragons on the Friday evening in Pool Two, with the Roosters now forced to face Nine’s specialists the New Zealand Warriors on Saturday ahead of the Finals.
Over on the women’s side of the tournament, Sydney Roosters and New Zealand Warriors will kick-off festivities at 4:00pm Friday afternoon, before the Brisbane Broncos and St George Illawarra Dragons round out action on Day One at 8pm.
“Nines promises to be the ultimate summer rugby league fun for families and fans,” NRL Chief Commercial Officer Andrew Abdo said.
“The tournament will showcase a dynamic new-look game, with new rules and a new attitude, designed to engage and entertain fans.
“It’s an exciting and bold new format and we know fans are going to love it.”
Fans are encouraged to get creative and come in their boldest and brightest summer outfits for the festival-like atmosphere.
West Australian Tourism Minister Paul Papalia said: “Perth has been the centre of some sensational NRL action this year with the inaugural State of Origin clash in June, proving there is an enormous appetite for the sport here in the West.
“Securing the nation’s first-ever NRL Nines tournament is further confirmation Perth has the infrastructure, the entertainment and the atmosphere to host drawcard events.
“It’s a win for WA tourism, the economy and for rugby league fans. I encourage everyone to snap up a ticket and be part of this history-making experience.
The NRL Nines Perth 2020 is supported by Tourism Western Australia and will be broadcast live on Fox League and KAYO Sports in Australia, as well as SKY in New Zealand.