Newcastle loses State of Origin match

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Newcastle will no longer host the third round of the State of Origin.

It comes as the NSW Government advised the Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC) it was not allowed to stage a major event with a crowd on Wednesday. 

The match will now be staged on the Gold Coast.

The decision was made in a bid to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in regional NSW.

The worsening situation in Sydney caused the NSW Government to believe hosting a major event with a crowd could create additional risk to the community.

“We are disappointed not to be able to give Newcastle the city’s first State of Origin,” NRL CEO Andrew Abdo said.

“But, we must operate within all State Public Health Orders and not having a crowd in Newcastle negates the opportunity for our fans from the region,

“The Gold Coast has a very low infection rate and both Origin camps are currently located within driving distance of Cbus Stadium.

“It means neither team will be disadvantaged by travel.

“This is an exciting outcome for the Gold Coast. It will be the first time in history that the Gold Coast has hosted State of Origin.

“The Gold Coast is an important market for us and, in the current circumstances, presents a safe outcome for the community and a great outcome for our fans in southeast Queensland.

“It does mean all three games are played in Queensland, but our priority is ensuring the safety of the community and the continuity of the competition.”

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