The Telstra Premiership 2021 draw has something for everyone with blockbusters, the return of the popular traditional Easter and Anzac games, the Magic Round, stacks of regional games and Origin mid-year.
After the chaos of a restructured 2020 and the loss of those marquee events due to COVID, everyone is back on schedule for next year.
The traditional Easter fights are back with the Bulldogs and Bunnies taking part in round four on Good Friday and the Wests Tigers hosting Parramatta on Easter Monday.
The Anzac round falls into the seventh round. On Sunday there will be a triple header of the NRL games on Anzac day, starting with the Wests Tigers against Manly at Bankwest Stadium at 1am. 45 o’clock.
The cocks and kites compete against each other at 4:00 am at the SCG. 5pm with the storm and warriors from AAMI Park at 6am. 3pm.
After Townsville missed a round game of Anzac last season due to the two-month hiatus, he can go on Saturday the 24th. April, host an Anzac game with the Raiders to visit the Queensland Country Bank Stadium.
Magic Round falls in Round 10 with eight games over three days and a team from Queensland closing the round on Friday night with Manly versus Brisbane, Roosters versus Cowboys on Saturday night and Titans versus Panthers on Sunday night.
« This schedule is about our fans, our players and our clubs, » said Andrew Abdo, CEO of NRL.
“It rewards your discipline, determination and sacrifice over the past season. More games take place in family-friendly slots, there are fewer turnarounds for five days and a more balanced ratio of clubs in the television time slots.
“It will be anything but normal on the field. Our clubs have an off-season to think about new innovations from the commission that will ensure our game is more fun and free than ever. ”
The Telstra Premiership starts on 11. March with a Thursday night blockbuster between Premier Melbourne and last season’s fast-ending preliminary finalists in South Sydney, with master coaches Craig Bellamy and Wayne Bennett competing against each other.
The Brisbane Wooden Spoons start their season at home against the youngest tormentor, Parramatta, on Friday night, while the round ends on Sunday night with a local dragons-and-shark derby.
The other first round games include Newcastle v Canterbury in the earlier Friday game, Warriors v Titans, Roosters v Sea Eagles and Panthers v Cowboys on Saturday, and Raiders v Wests Tigers on Sunday afternoon.
In the second round, the eels want to take revenge on Thursday evening at Bankwest Stadium against Melbourne, on Friday evening in the local bus against David Fifita against his former teammates at the Cbus Super Stadium and on Friday evening against Trent Barrett against his old club as the Bulldogs host the Panthers on Saturday afternoon at Bankwest Stadium.
The blockbusters start in round three with a major rematch between Storm and Panthers on Thursday evening and Souths against arch rivals The Roosters on Friday evening.
In the 2021 draw, teams are playing three games straight away just four times, compared to eight games last season, and the total number of turnarounds for five days is down again from 26 to 25.
Between rounds 15 and 16 there is again a representation round in the mid-season, in which the country of origin II is presented on Sunday. The split rounds before Origin end up in rounds 13 and 17.
There will also be a record number of games in regional areas, with 14 games being played on 10 non-traditional fields for the next season.
National Rugby League, South Sydney Rabbitohs, Sydney Roosters, Wests Tigers, 2021, Manly Warringah Sea Eagles, Melbourne Storm, Brisbane Broncos, Newcastle Knights, Parramatta Eels
World news – AU – NRL 2021 draw: Magic Round, Easter and Anzac Blockbuster return
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